The ELCA has received a $1 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to help establish the Formation Lab Project.
The goal of the project is to help congregations move past prescriptive, outdated models of youth ministry that often separate youth from the vital faith practices they need if they are to embrace God as the center of their life in today’s world. Through the Formation Lab, the ELCA and the ELCA Youth Ministry Network (the Network) will create and nurture adaptive youth ministry models that allow congregations to discern and implement what innovation looks like in their own contexts while uniting them around a shared understanding of future ministry.
The grant will enable the ELCA and the Network to discover diverse models and practices by accompanying 50 key congregations in different cohorts; equip 3,000 leaders for leading ministry with younger generations; and provide ELCA congregations with accessible and affordable resources.
“Our aim is to reach every congregation in the ELCA with a desire to nurture the faith formation of youth, engaging them more fully with the stories and practices of our faith,” said Elizabeth A. Eaton, ELCA presiding bishop.
The project is being funded through Lilly Endowment’s “Strengthening Ministries With Youth” initiative.