Preparing Future Pastors

We believe the church as God designed it is the hope of the world, and at Made to Flourish we want to see the church’s potential unleashed in every neighborhood and city. The daily work of each congregation member, including the business executive and the stay-at-home caregiver, all bring beauty, goodness, and express the unique characteristics of a worker God. Work is a primary way Christians join together in the mission of God to make all things new. Unless pastors understand this important truth, the church will have embraced an impoverished gospel, and will be handicapped in its effectiveness to influence people and culture for the common good.

Most pastors lack practical training in economics. They may have a commitment to justice or charity, but don’t know how to equip their congregations to expand opportunity, create capacity, or connect virtue formation to everyday work in the economy. As a result, most congregation members don’t know how economic participation is connected with their faith. As pastors become equipped to integrate faith, work, and economic wisdom, congregants can embrace a new perspective on work and the economy that will transform the way they engage their communities.

Pastoral Residencies

At the heart of our commitment to empower pastors is the conviction that we must be training the next generation of pastors. The Made to Flourish pastoral residency program partners with churches to establish a pastoral residency in their church. Just as teaching hospitals provide real-life experience for young, talented doctors, a pastoral residency provides an irreplaceable learning laboratory for seminary graduates to grow in leadership, preaching, administration, and godly character. Pastoral residents are given responsibility, mentored by senior leaders, and prepared for life-long success in pastoral ministry.

Six Traits of a Made to Flourish Pastoral Residency:

  • Preparing pastors for a lifetime of pastoral service
  • Based in a local church
  • Teaches a theology of faith, work, and economic wisdom
  • A minimum of two- years in length
  • Occurs after graduation from seminary or during degree completion
  • Involves pastoral employment for the resident

“…I watched my father, a gunsmith, slowly disconnect and eventually leave the church altogether because he consistently felt like a low-grade believer. Pastor after pastor demanded that he had to serve in the ordained ministries of the church if he was really honoring God… So I’m pretty stoked to be a part of a network that says to men like my father, ‘Your workplace is your mission; it is your Christian life.’” MTF Portland Pastor

Start a Residency

Our pastoral residency network offers resources, peer relationships, coaching, and start-up funding to churches interested in beginning and sustaining a pastoral residency program. Our pastoral residency workshops are a great way to assess your church’s readiness to begin and sustain a residency.

This two-day workshop will guide church teams through the following:

  • Assessing readiness to begin a pastoral residency
  • The six traits of a Made to Flourish residency
  • Crafting a five-year and beyond funding model
  • Implementing an action plan

Attendees will hear from practitioners in the pastoral residency field, including Kevin Harlan, Tom Nelson, and Matt Rusten, among others. Our next workshop will be held June 8-9, 2021 in Kansas City. For more information about pastoral residencies and registration for the workshop, please contact Bethany Van Eps at

Join a Residency

We are encouraged by your desire to enter into a season of formational training as a pastoral resident. The Made to Flourish network of residency churches supports 18 residency programs across the country. More information about these programs and their residency coordinator contact information can be found below:

Ambassador Church – Orange County, California

Briarcliff Church – Kansas City, Missouri 

Christ Community Church – Kansas City Metro Area

City Church Project – Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Creekside Community Church – Gainesville, Florida

Crossroads Bible Church – Grand Rapids, Michigan

Brandon Hirth,

Church of the Ascension – Falls Church, Virginia

Church of the Advent – Washington, DC

Deborah Tepley,

Church of the Incarnation – Harrisonburg, Virginia

Church of the Resurrection – Washington, DC

Grace Chapel – Boston, Massachusetts

Grace Church – Ocala, Florida

Lake Arlington Baptist Church – Arlington, Texas

Lakeside Christian Church – Akron, Ohio

Petar Nenadov,

Macedonia Baptist Church – Kansas City, Missouri

Real Life Church – Midlothian, Virginia

Tabernacle Community Church – Grand Rapids, Michigan