At Friendship Presbyterian Church, worship is a central and centering act of the worshiping community that inspires us to go into the world and work for justice and peace. With 1001 Worshipping Communities, Friendship has created a Pastoral Residency, a yearlong program for the entrepreneurial in the 21st century. Their pastor, the Rev. Shawna Bowman says, "The Residency is focused on increasing the capacity of ministry leaders in new church and church redevelopment skills specifically in the areas of community organizing, building collaborative community partners and experimenting with being the church in new ways." The ideal applicant will be creative, insightful and open to a wide variety of worship styles. Residents will lead worship, build relationships within the community and surrounding communities.
Friendship Presbyterian Church is in a time of transition to a new space in Chicago’s Mayfair/Old Irving Park Neighborhood, after worshiping and working for six years out of a train station on the city’s Northwest Side. This move represents a time of growth and collaboration. Friendship will be partnering and sharing space with The Night Ministry, an organization that works to provide health care, housing and human connection to those experiencing homelessness in Chicago. "This is an exciting time of discernment for our new worshiping community as we begin to sift through the possibilities of using our space to partner with other neighborhood organizations to serve where most needed. We're looking for a resident who will be open to trying a variety of ideas, able to take risks and committed to a process of reflection—both on the effectiveness of ministry and the theological implications of the work of Friendship Presbyterian Church," said Bowman.
1001 New Worshipping Communities is supporting the residency program. The ideal applicant will have a passion for serving vulnerable populations and will help foster a mutual relationship with The Night Ministry, taking the lead on shared initiatives. They will be trained in community organizing and will provide leadership as Friendship discerns how best to serve the community in its new neighborhood. The ideal applicant for Friendship Presbyterian Church’s Pastoral Immersion Program residency will have a commitment to creativity and experimentation. Residents will be called to be leaders who can cultivate a vision and build and empower the community to embody who God is calling us to be in the 21st century as followers of Jesus.
In addition to possessing the qualities described, ideal candidates for a new worshiping community residency at Friendship will demonstrate a deep personal understanding of their own story and how it connects to God’s story, so they can help to cultivate these same connections within the community. Residents will partner with and equip others to embody the grace and beauty of God in both ordinary and significant moments of ministry. Successful applicants will be Christian leaders who are unapologetically committed to loving and meeting people where they are but, like Christ, will not leave them where they found them, but instead will empower them to be the people God is calling them to be.
Residents will receive housing and a monthly stipend and will contribute $1,000 of their own fundraising by September 1, 2017. Residents also will take part in an advanced national training with 1001 interns June 12-15 in Los Angeles. One residency is open for 2017–18. Applications, including Letters of Reference, are due by March 1, 2017. A discernment team selects candidates for the program. Decisions will be made by April 15.