Providing ministry education opportunities since 1962

Transformational Leadership Institute

The 2017 Transformational Leadership Institute

Standing in the Tragic Gap: A renewed call for transformation.


Facilitator: Dr. Susan Fowler, Professor and Director of the GTF D.Min. program in Transformational Leadership

Like many in the global community since the inauguration of Donald Trump to the presidency, I’m fearful, angry and deeply offended by words and actions that threaten the principles upon which our country was founded: justice, freedom, truth-telling, inclusion and equality for all.  But I’m also confident that the Holy One does not abandon us, but is calling us to examine how, as transformational faith leaders, we are called to serve and lead those in our care.

As I consider my own response, I find both comfort and challenge in the counsel of the prophets.  While distinct in words and ways, all share the dual themes of call and response for the present times and a vision of a transformed future.

Habakkuk sounds the call: stand at the watch post; listen for God’s voice and keep faith until the appointed time of salvation.   Micah reminds us: do justice, love kindness and walk humbly with God.  Isaiah exhorts us: offer radical hospitality to the stranger, share bread with the oppressed, shelter the homeless. Jesus offers courage and blessing: hope, pray always and don’t lose heart.

Each of them holds up a vision for a new creation based on radical transformation that fulfills the promise.  Isaiah prophesies: a Light will rise in the darkness, removing despair and sorrow.  Habakkuk reminds us: hold fast to a vision to be fulfilled in the fullness of time.  Micah foresees a time when nations beat their swords into plowshares, their spears into pruning hooks, all living in peace and amity.  Jesus proclaims the advent of God’s reign of peace and justice and embodies it in his ministry of presence, power and compassion.

During this year’s Transformational Leadership Institute, we’ll explore how we are called by God to lead, using three themes for our operative learning framework:

  • Remembering and affirming our own orienting vocation and vision that called us to ministry;
  • Exploring the ways in which prophetic leadership exhorts us to remember, imagine and imitate God’s compassion by standing in solidarity with the suffering and working for justice; how servant leadership invites us into a radical relationship of discipleship: knowing, loving and acting on Jesus’ own example; and how transformational leadership equips, supports and inspires those whom we lead into self- actualization and social transformation.
  • Developing skills and strategies that serve both to bind up the wounds of the suffering and to transform unjust systems and hierarchies of power into those which support full flourishing in our own ministry settings and beyond.
Registration Form: To download a registration form, please click here
Dates:   June 4 – 9, 2017
Location:  Mercy By the Sea, Madison, CT 06443
Credits: NPO or two Units of Study