Life is Calling, an Initiative of the Center for Congregational Resources

The Center received a $1.5 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. in 2018, becoming one of 13 “Innovation Hubs” in the US and Canada to join the Endowment’s Called to Lives of Meaning and Purpose initiative. Life is Calling was launched in the fall of 2018 and currently includes 13 churches representing 6 faith traditions which form a learning community examining the intersection of calling with a life of meaning and purpose.

Upcoming Events:

"Table" with Rev. Lisa Cole Smith; July 23, 2022

"Send" with Dr. Gregory Ellison; October 15, 2022


The first phase of Life is Calling has included 13 churches who have spent two years facilitating conversations, sermons, Bible studies, etc. about individual and corporate (congregational) calling. They have also engaged in a church-wide process of discernment and created their own initiatives to further explore calling and serve their local communities. Some of these initiatives include: respite care for caregivers of individuals with memory loss, partnership with a local school to provide after-school tutoring and literacy classes, and a retreat series on calling that includes all five generations of church members to more deeply explore how calling can change throughout one’s life. With most of these initiatives paused during the pandemic, churches are looking forward to carrying on their work some time in 2021.

The second phase of Life is Calling launched in the spring of 2021 and includes 10 more congregations and/or campus ministries with a specific focus on exploring Christian calling with youth and young adults ages 16-26. Churches who participate in this 2-year program with engage in 4 learning modules and clergy peer groups. 


Virtual Worship Services

Our Team

  • Bill Blackerby
  • Gary Burton