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Guiding Scripture: Luke 24:13-35


Vision: Multiplying Leaders for Christ’s Mission Through Coaching


Purpose: Create a coaching culture in the ELCA that will empower and multiply leaders at every expression of the church to actively engage with the intention of transformation in their part of God’s mission in the world.


Guiding principles:


· God’s mission and the work of the Holy Spirit are the heart of coaching.


· Coaching is a ministry of accompaniment and encouragement.


· God provides everything needed to accomplish God’s purposes for every leader and congregation.


· Effective leadership is adaptive leadership. Coaching facilitates adaptive leadership.


What do I need to do to get a coach?

Just click on the Request a Coach button on any webpage on this site and complete the form with as much detail as possible. Our Coaching Coordinator will reach out to you regarding next steps.

How much will it cost me?

The cost can be free, or costs can run from the price of a cup of coffee or lunch to $150 per session. The difference in the cost is related to the amount of experience of the coach. If you are a pastor or congregational leader and your congregation is going to benefit from the coaching relationship, we highly recommend that the church bear whatever cost there is associated with the relationship. If you need help to offset some of the cost of coaching, please contact Jill.Beverlin@elca.org.

Do I need coaching?

We believe that anyone who has goals they want to accomplish and learning they want to master can benefit from a coaching relationship. The core requirements are a posture of openness, teachability, an openness to reflection, and a desire to work on the part of the client.

In what ways can coaching help me?

Coaching can be used for a myriad of opportunities, including but not limited to:

  • Personal leadership growth

  • Growing as a head of staff

  • Leading as an associate pastor, council president, or stewardship chair

  • Skillful handling of staff or congregational conflict

  • Council development

  • Empowering evangelism

  • Congregational transformation

  • Worship, Mission, or Stewardship development

  • Strategic planning

  • Multiplying leaders

  • Building ministry teams

How long is a coaching relationship?

The initial relationship will usually be six sessions over a space of three to six months. At that time, our coaches are trained to reflect with you on the progress you are making and the effectiveness of the relationship. At that point, some clients prefer to take a break from coaching, while others prefer to continue the coaching relationship.

What is the difference between coaching, counseling, consulting, and mentoring?

Counseling: In counseling, the therapist works with the client on places of mental or emotional stuckness, often working through past hurts and relational difficulties, with the goal of reaching emotional or mental freedom and higher relational functioning.

Consulting: In consulting, the consultant acts as material expert, does the majority of the talking, presenting, and the telling. The posture of the client is one of receptivity and much more passivity.

Mentoring: Mentoring is a longer term relationship that leverages the knowledge, experience, and wisdom of the mentor for the growth and empowerment of the mentee. The relationship is mutual, and the dynamic of interaction is 50/50.

Coaching: Coaching is a relational alliance that leverages the technology and art of powerful questions and intentional exploration to produce awareness, change, and transformation for the client. In coaching, the client does 80% of the talking.

I'm interested in coach training to improve my leadership skills. What next?

Check the Resources page for Upcoming Trainings.

I'm interested in becoming a coach. What next?

Coaching is open to both clergy and lay leaders. Please connect with our Coach Coordinator, Jill Beverlin (Jill.Beverlin@elca.org). She will work with you on next steps.

What kind of training do our coaches have?

All of our coaches have been trained by an International Coach Federation (ICF) Associate Certified Coach who has been developed as a Coach Trainer for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). Each of our coaches has passed a development process called ELCA Coach Training Launch and are, at least what we call in the ELCA, a Level 1 Coach. Level 2 Coaches have additional training in specialty areas such as stewardship, discipleship, congregational vitality, and care for creation. Some of our coaches are working on professional credentialing through the ICF, and some are already certified.

Is there anything else I need to know about ELCA coaches?

All of our coaches abide by the ethical guidelines of the International Coach Federation (ICF). Click here to read those guidelines.