Nollau Institute Registration Opens

David Waltemeyer felt drawn to the Nollau Institute immediately after hearing about it. Now halfway through his experience as a member of the 2014 class, he’s thankful he made the decision to apply.

“I have lifelong friends that before 2014 I didn’t know who they were,” he says. “That’s been amazing.”

Waltemeyer, who serves as board chair at CHHSM ministry Peppermint Ridge in Corona, Calif., says two things about the program have stood out to him in particular.

“One is what the Christ-based servant leadership that they teach through Nollau is all about,” he says, adding that he’s learned more about the importance of being open to divergent opinions. “It’s transformational and counter-cultural.”

The second component? Community. Waltemeyer says he’s thankful to have experienced an extravagant welcome through his contact with Nollau and CHHSM members and his attendance at the 2014 Annual Meeting.

Open to leaders from CHHSM ministries and partnering organizations, the Nollau Institute combines the best in adult education and leadership training, grounded in a fundamental appreciation of faith heritage and spiritual formation. The institute is named after Louis Edward Nollau, a 19th-century missionary and preacher, and founder of several CHHSM ministries.

Fellow classmate Randy Yost, administrator at RHF community The Cloisters of DeLand in DeLand, Fla., says that he’s also grateful for the people he’s met through the program.

“It’s been a great learning opportunity to understand different leadership styles, company values and especially what CHHSM stands for,” Yost says.

In mid-July, the class gathered for its second retreat at Horizon House in Seattle. The meeting’s theme, “The Practice of Leadership,” looked at topics such as self-organization, motivation and leading in community and relied on Patricia Hughes’s book “Gracious Space.”

Waltemeyer says he found the principles within the book and the study to be thought-provoking.

“It’s a different approach of avoiding hostility, but still having the courage to deal with pressing matters,” he says. “It’s about following the energy of what comes naturally as you see things happen, without stifling creativity or innovation.”

Yost says the lessons from the retreat reinforced his goals for The Cloisters of DeLand.

“It’s really supported the vision of what I want to do here, as far as what is involved in creating an environment of grace,” he says.

Class members will participate in online discussions and peer mentoring from August through November before meeting for a third and final retreat in December. The retreat, which will be held at the Franciscan Renewal Center in Scottsdale, Ariz., will focus on “The Product of Leadership,” and give attendees an opportunity to apply leadership practices in real-life situations.

Yost says he’s looking forward to applying what he’s learned.

He encourages those who are interested in the class to approach it with open minds. “Don’t set so much on what you think you know, because it’s a great opportunity to explore other avenues of leadership, acceptance and corporate structures,” he says.

Waltemeyer agrees. “You might think you know what to expect, but I think you would be pleasantly surprised about how much above and beyond you will take away both professionally and personally,” he says. “It has application in your whole life, not just in work. These principles are for the whole person.”

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