The Leadership Institute will equip leaders to reach new people in new ways. There will be seven monthly online workshop and coaching groups. Each workshop will begin at 9:00 am and will be 1.5-2.5 hours in length. Each coaching group will establish its monthly meeting schedule.

Workshop Schedule




The cost is $200 for the first person from each church/charge. Additional registrants from the same church will be $50, with a maximum of $150 per church/charge.  Video access of workshops will be available for paid participants.  

For two or three sessions, there will also be a book to read prior to the workshop. These will be purchased at the participant's expense.

Only the team leader from the church will be a part of a coaching group. If a church team decides that they need specific coaching for their whole team to implement a ministry plan, this could be considered at an additional cost.

If a person wants to participate but is unavailable on Tuesday mornings, they can apply to participate asynchronously (watching the recorded videos).

Participation in the full course is 1.6 clergy continuing education credits.

If you have questions, contact Mike Crawford, Coordinator of Congregational Development via email.

NOTE: This is different than the Congregational Development Leadership Institute (CDLI) which has been held in the past and has totally different content. Anyone, including alums of CDLI, are encouraged to apply.



Olu Brown

January 26: Tom Albin

Personal Spiritual Growth

Rev. Tom Albin is currently the Executive Director of the United Christian Ashrams in North America, a spiritual renewal movement that began in India through the leadership of E. Stanley Jones. In August of 2020, Tom retired as the Director of Spiritual Formation and Congregational Life at The Upper Room in Nashville, TN.  Previously he has served as a seminary professor at the University of Dubuque and Boston University School of Theology. During the last four sessions of the UMC General Conference, he led the Prayer Ministry and introduced the presence of trained Spiritual Directors that were available to all the delegates, leaders and guests.

Tom is an internationally recognized leader and teacher in the areas of Prayer, Spiritual Formation and Wesleyan Spirituality. His recent publications include: 

“The Christian Ashram” in Church History Magazine issue on E. Stanley Jones (2020); “John Wesley” in the New Dictionary of Theology: Historical and Systematic (2016); “Missional Evangelists: A Modest Proposal” in Catalyst Online Magazine (2015); “Methodist Spirituality” in The T&T Clark Handbook on Methodism (2010); “The Experience of God” in The Oxford Handbook on Methodism (2009); "Inwardly Persuaded": Religion of the Heart in Early British Methodism in the volume "Heart Religion in the Methodist Tradition, edited by Richard B. Steele.



February 16: Paul Nixon

*change of speaker, same topic*

Behavioral Characteristics & Models for Starting New Places

Paul Nixon is Director of Church Multiplication for Discipleship Ministries. He has coached hundreds of pastors, church planters and Christian leaders across the last two decades in America and the UK in multiple Christian denominations.  Paul is author or co-author of eleven books. His 2021 titles are Cultural Competency (May 2021) and Launching a New Worship Community (August 2021).  Paullives in Washington DC and Palm Springs, CA. 


Olu Brown

March 2 & 16: Jason Moore

Both/And Worship

Franchise to Local Dive

Known for his pioneering work in worship design and guest readiness, Jason Moore has devoted the last two decades to resource development, training, coaching, and consulting that works for local churches of all sizes, styles, and means.  The author of ten books, Jason has led hundreds of seminars and given keynote addresses across North America, teaching in all 50 states in the USA.


April 13: Nona Jones

From Social Media to Social Ministry

Nona Jones is an internationally renowned speaker, preacher, author and business executive who has become a recognized voice of hope, healing and inspiration to many, using her platform to equip people to rise from their past pain into a fulfilling future. She was licensed into the gospel ministry at the age of 17 and regularly preaches around the world.

Nona authored two bestselling books, her memoir, Success from the Inside Out, chronicles her journey to healing and redemption after childhood physical and sexual abuse and her digital discipleship guide From Social Media to Social Ministry that equips Christians to advance God's Kingdom through social technology.

Nona has been profiled by ESSENCE Magazine as an “Under 40 Woman to Watch” and Florida Trend Magazine as one of Florida’s “30-Something All Stars.” A sought-after public-speaker, she has delivered keynote addresses for the United Nations and Attorney General Loretta Lynch. She holds a Bachelor in Communications and Master of Business Administration from the University of Florida where she has been recognized as an Outstanding Young Alumnus. She is also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.

Visit her website.


Olu Brown

May 25: Luke Edwards

Introduction to Fresh Expressions

Luke is the Associate Director of Church Development for the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church and a trainer for Fresh Expressions US. He was the founding pastor of King Street Church, a network of fresh expressions (micro faith communities) in Boone, NC.  With his work in local, regional, and national levels of the Fresh Expressions movement Luke has a unique perspective into how creating micro communities can offer a path for the future of the church in a post-Christian society. He lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he enjoys listening to jazz vinyl and going for walks with his wife and daughter.



June 22: Ann Marie Carley

Navigating an Existing Congregation to Start Fresh Expressions

As a UMC Deacon, Ann Marie's ministry focus is helping churches walk through sacred change. She is currently living out this call by serving as the Executive Pastor (and overseeing Fresh Expressions) at Trinity Church in Chillicothe, Ohio. She and her husband are passionate about sharing Jesus, cycling, cycling to tacos and exploring new ways to connect with others.


Olu Brown

July 27: Mike Crawford & Amy Shreve

Executing a Plan

Mike Crawford is the Coordinator of Congregational Development. He is passionate about equipping leaders and churches to connect with their community and to make disciples. Mike loves to bake and is an avid runner and has pounded the pavement for over 10,000 miles. If he didn't run, he'd have to roll! He and his wife, Patty Johansen (who is also an IGRC pastor) have two adult children who both work in ministry.

God keeps calling Amy Shreve into ministry with the church. She’s had the pleasure to work for three churches facilitating youth and family ministries and now serves the Illinois Great Rivers Conference supporting college and young adult ministry as well as serves as the Associate Coordinator of Congregational Development.  Last year, she finished a Master’s of Nonprofit Administration which helps her support the nuts and bolts of church work. She’s married to a professor and has two kids whom she drags on weekend hikes that end with ice cream.