First Pres is very proud to be a teaching community. We recognize the importance of pastoral residency and have created an endowment to ensure that future seminary graduates have the tools they need to make a successful transition into a lifetime of ministry. Our resident ministers enrich First Pres – broadening the reach of our committees and staff by sharing their energy, creativity, talent and experience. They participate in all aspects of congregational life, from teaching adult education classes, officer training, and Advent and Lenten studies, leading mission trips, and providing pastoral care, to coordinating UKirk @ UMich campus ministry events such as meeting one-on-one with university students and facilitating Wednesday undergraduate conversations.
Did you know that this is all part of an expansive curriculum under the guidance of Rev. Jay Sanderford and the Resident Ministry Work Group? The Resident Ministry curriculum includes a variety of modules which involve members of the staff, congregation and community. It is broad yet tailored to meet the needs of individual residents. Residents study preaching and leading worship with senior clergy and work individually with voice coach Doris Granum. Some modules focus on worship like “Story Telling for Preachers” and “Designing Worship and Music Workshop” while others target administrative skills such as “Understanding my Conflict Management Style” and “Self-Care as a Pastoral Leader.” As Residents work through this rich program, they develop healthy work patterns and leadership tools and styles which will serve them well throughout their careers as strong pastoral leaders.