Lilly Endowment Inc. Provides More Than $1M (CAD) Grant to Help Establish the Tyndale Centre for Pastoral Imagination

By Tyndale Communications  /  Friday, July 8, 2022

Six pillar front entrance of the Tyndale University campus

Tyndale University expresses deep gratitude to Lilly Endowment Inc. for their generous grant of $999,993 (approximately $1.3 million CAD) to help establish the Tyndale Centre for Pastoral Imagination. The Centre is funded through Lilly Endowment’s Pathways for Tomorrow Initiative, a three-phase initiative designed to help theological schools across the United States and Canada as they prioritize and respond to the most pressing challenges they face as they prepare pastoral leaders for Christian congregations both now and into the future.

With this grant, Tyndale Seminary will launch the new Tyndale Centre for Pastoral Imagination. The Centre will build on existing Tyndale strengths and will coordinate and accelerate its ability to prepare pastoral leaders for the exciting challenges and opportunities in the Greater Toronto Area, Canada’s fastest growing and most diverse region. It will host, connect, support, and resource four teaching and learning hubs: Ministry Decolonization, Women in Ministry, New Generations & Multicultural Church and Wellness. Each hub has a twofold purpose, to identify theologically appropriate and culturally appropriate ways to expand support to pastoral leaders. We aim for these Hubs to become spaces of collaboration and integration, where lived experiences and academic research will fuel our pastoral imagination towards the redemptive work that the Triune God is already doing in our midst.  Learn more about plans for the Tyndale Centre for Pastoral Imagination.

“The Lilly Endowment grant is a tremendous gift that will build on Tyndale’s leadership in seminary education, enabling the Seminary to provide additional innovative and contextually relevant resources with and for churches and ministerial leaders as they respond to emerging needs in rapidly changing contexts,” says Dr. Marjory Kerr, President and Vice Chancellor, Tyndale University.

“The Centre for Pastoral Imagination will enable us to bring this vision to life in a new expression of our Mission, as we continue to educate, develop and prepare people to serve the church and the world for the glory of God.”

— Dr. Marjory Kerr, President and Vice Chancellor

Tyndale is one of 105 theological schools receiving phase two grants. Together they represent the broad diversity of Christianity in the U.S. and Canada. The schools are affiliated with evangelical, mainline Protestant, nondenominational, Pentecostal, Orthodox, Catholic, Black church, Latino, Asian-American and historic peace church traditions (e.g., Church of the Brethren, Mennonite, Quakers).

“Theological schools have long played a pivotal role in preparing pastoral leaders for churches,” said Christopher L. Coble, the Endowment’s vice president for religion. “Today, these schools find themselves in a period of rapid and profound change.  Through the Pathways Initiative, theological schools will take deliberate steps to address the challenges they have identified in ways that make the most sense to them.  We believe that their efforts are critical to ensuring that Christian congregations continue to have a steady stream of pastoral leaders who are well-prepared to lead the churches of tomorrow.”

The Pathways initiative is part of Lilly Endowment’s wider efforts to strengthen theological schools and other religious institutions and networks that prepare pastoral leaders to ensure that a diverse array of Christian congregations are guided by a steady stream of wise, faithful and well-prepared leaders.

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About Lilly Endowment Inc.

Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by J.K. Lilly, Sr. and his sons Eli and J.K. Jr. through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Company. Although the gifts of stock remain a financial bedrock of the Endowment, it is a separate entity from the company, with a distinct governing board, staff and location. In keeping with the founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, education and religion and maintains a special commitment to its founders’ hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana. A primary aim of its grantmaking in religion is to deepen the religious lives of Christians, principally by supporting efforts that enhance congregational vitality and strengthen the leadership of Christian communities. The Endowment values the broad diversity of Christian traditions and endeavors to support them in a wide variety of contexts. The Endowment also seeks to foster public understanding about religion by encouraging fair, accurate and balanced portrayals of the positive and negative effects of religion on the world and lifting up the contributions that people of all faiths make to our greater civic well-being.

About Tyndale University

Tyndale University in Toronto, Ontario, is built on over 125 years of history and offers a wide range of undergraduate, graduate, post-graduate and seminary programs. Known for high-quality academics interwoven with faith, Tyndale nurtures a strong sense of community and dialogue between students and professors, who, in turn, challenge each other to live authentically, follow Christ and actively engage their cultures. Tyndale alumni can be found serving with passion and purpose in private, public and nonprofit industries and on mission fields around the world.