Transitioning Into Ministry

Therefore encourage one another and build up each other, as indeed you are doing. But we appeal to you, brothers and sisters, to respect those who labor among you, and have charge of you in the Lord and admonish you; esteem them very highly in love because of their work. 1 Thessalonians 5:11-12.


Starting well is essential for new pastors. It can make the difference between beginning a lifetime of effective pasto­ral ministry or burning out after a few short years. As new pastors learn to lead in their congregation and develop their pastoral identity, the Transition into Ministry Program (TiM) provides the opportunity to develop life-giving skills and habits. That is what TiM is all about – helping new pastors start well with guidance and support.

TiM equips and encourages new pastors through an intentional two-year mentoring process. This formational experience helps new pastors establish good habits and faithful practices that will serve them throughout a lifetime of ministry.

Who is TiM For?

TiM equips pastors at the beginning of their ministry. Eligible applicants include those who are:

  1. in their first placement as pastor or associate pastor and
  2. within the first two years of their pastoral placement.


What does TiM involve?

Group Coaching

During the first two years, ministry cohorts of 3-5 new pastors will meet regularly with a coach, either in person or via video conferencing. Coaches are selected by the Men­nonite Church USA Leadership Development team and are specially trained to walk alongside new pastors.

Each year the coach will meet with the group five times and will have at least one individual meeting with each pastor. In addition, the coach will provide regular written feedback to the pastors in her/his cohort.


Group coaching sessions will include:

  • exploring ministry case studies
  • developing personal growth goals
  • engaging reading assignments and discussions
  • exploring methods of spiritual self care
  • working with personality inventories


What is the cost to participate in TiM?

The cost is shared by three groups:

  • Local congregation – $200
  • Area conference – $200
  • Mennonite Church USA – all additional costs for the first-year retreat, coach stipends, and materials.

Limited scholarships are available. Call the Leadership Development office to inquire.

Download the brochure here.

For more information or to apply contact

Leadership Development Office

1-866-866-2872 X23032