New Seminary Conference to Resource Bi-Vocational Ministry Leaders
by Kristina Garvelink (M.S. ’15)
On Jan. 28, Grand Rapids Theological Seminary (GRTS) plans to welcome bi-vocational professionals to campus for a free evening conference. Funded by the seminary's fiscal literacy program grant from the Lilly Endowment, the informational event entitled Bi-Vocational Ministry: Balancing Dual Roles will feature a panel discussion, networking and hors d'oeuvres.
Emily DeVries, fiscal literacy program coordinator for GRTS, is serving as the organizer and facilitator of the new event.
"Our goal in this conference is to encourage those in attendance and bring light to the joys and challenges of bi-vocational ministry; the changing field of pastoral ministry and the future of the church; the lives of people who feel a dual calling; and the churches that support them," DeVries said. "We desire to empower those in attendance to spread the gospel wherever God has them and to create an environment where people feel heard and are eager to hear others."
Designed for ministry leaders, seminarians and laypeople of various denominations, the conference aims to empower participants with encouragement for their bi-vocational roles and a renewed perspective to faithfully embody their callings in the new year.
"The conversation on the role of bi-vocational pastors has changed a lot over the past few years, a trend that we don't see dying out, and we are excited to have a conversation with panelists who have served in bi-vocational roles in many different church settings," DeVries stated. "We hope that opening the lines of communication and starting the conversation will be encouraging and educational."