Newest Nollau faculty member the Rev. Mona West, a leadership development specialist, meets with the current class during its January retreat.

Although applications are coming in quickly, there is still time to apply for the Nollau Leadership Institute’s class of 2020-2021.

The unique, year-long program offers participants a highly-interactive opportunity to focus on how their faith provides the context of being a successful serving leader. It also helps them examine how their faith heritage and spiritual formation helps shape their response to a call to leadership.

“The Nollau Leadership Institute is more than 20 years old, and CHHSM is blessed to be able to offer the program,” says Michael J. Readinger, president and CEO of CHHSM. “Through retreats, online dialogue, and peer mentoring, the Nollau Institute helps participants explore their vocation as leaders with the support of a community of classmates.”

The Institute is based around the three themes of theology, practice, and product of leadership. Through the program, class members discern their call as Diakonal Ministers. A special vocation for serving leaders within CHHSM members and the wider United Church of Christ, Diakonal Ministers advance the health and service ministry of Jesus Christ. Since 1996, more than 180 CHHSM leaders have been consecrated as Diakonal Ministers, part of the close to 300 consecrated from all denominations.

The new class begins in May 2020. Class sessions include three in-person retreats, small group calls, and online dialogue and readings in-between. Members of the class will be consecrated as Diakonal Ministers during closing worship of CHHSM’s 83rd Annual Gathering, which takes place March 2-4, 2021.

Each year, Nollau faculty members update the topics covered. They learn from the outgoing class, and CHHSM’s larger Diakonal Minister community. Each class also examines the link between leadership and advocacy. Participants help design their program, assist in facilitating sessions, and mentor each other.

The Institute is open to leaders from CHHSM ministries and partnering organizations, such as colleges, seminaries, conferences and other institutions related to the United Church of Christ. It also is open to individual members. Participants must be able to fully participate in all sessions as well as the online forum. Additionally, to enhance learning and community-building, class members are expected to stay overnight at the retreat center.

Retreat dates for the upcoming class are May 5-7, 2020; Sept. 22-24, 2020; and Jan. 12-14, 2021. All retreats take place at the Retreat Center at Cedar Valley, a CHHSM member in West Bend, Wis.

Space is limited to 21 participants, so early applications are strongly encouraged. The application is available online.