Institute of Preaching
The Institute of Preaching is a nine-month program of three retreats designed to help clergy from the Florida and Western North Carolina Conferences of the United Methodist Church improve their preaching.
Unlike other programs that focus only on style or techniques, the Institute of Preaching takes a comprehensive approach to preaching. Pastors examine not only their sermon content and delivery but also the contexts in which they preach and the integrity of their life and work.
During each retreat, participants hear from recognized authorities on preaching – both practitioners and Duke faculty — and also work with other participants in small peer groups, discussing their ministries and reviewing each other’s sermons. Between retreats, participants are encouraged to work with a small group from their own congregation to receive critical and constructive sermon feedback.
The Institute of Preaching is a partnership of the Florida Institute of Preaching Committee and Duke Divinity School. It is sponsored by the Florida Conference and the Parish Ministry Fund of the Western North Carolina Conference. All full-time elders and local pastors serving in either conference are eligible to apply.
Leadership Education will begin soliciting nominations for the 2013-2014 Institute of Preaching in early 2013. Ideal candidates are United Methodist pastors who:
- Serve as full-time elders or local pastors in the Florida Annual Conference or the Western North Carolina Annual Conference
- Do not anticipate a change in appointment in the coming year
- Have been complimented on their preaching and wish to take it to the next level
The Institute is a highly selective and intensive program, with enrollment limited to no more than 12 pastors from Florida and six from Western North Carolina. Pastors who are selected for the program will participate in a congregational training day and three retreats.
If you have any questions or concerns about the application process or would like assistance determining whether you are eligible for the program, please contact us.
2013-2014 Institute of Preaching
Attendance at the congregational training day and all three retreats is required. Before applying to the Institute, pastors should make sure they may be absent from their congregation on all session dates.
|Congregational Training Days||Saturday, August 17, 2013
Saturday, August 24, 2013
|Retreat I||September 15-18, 2013||
Chapel Hill, N.C.
|Retreat II||January 13-15, 2014||Florida|
|Retreat III||April 28-30, 2014||Georgia|
Thanks to the support of the Florida Annual Conference and the Parish Ministry Fund of the Western North Carolina Annual Conference, pastors may attend at minimal cost. The annual conferences cover the full cost of tuition, room and board, and instructional materials for each participant.
Pastors and their congregations are responsible only for the cost of travel to and from the sessions.
The sessions will be led by practicing preachers and educators who are known for their ability to teach and mentor others in the arts of preaching and communication.
Divinity faculty participate according to their availability and interest.
Christine Parton Burkett is a visiting professor of speech at Duke Divinity School. A native of North Carolina, she has worked with the homiletics and worship students at Duke since 1991, helping them find and enhance their voices in preaching and worship and communicate the gospel effectively and with grace. She has a B.S. in fine arts and a master's degree in speech-language pathology. She has contributed an essay on voice to the “Concise Encyclopedia of Preaching” and considers herself to be a professional pew-sitter.
Jim Harnish has served as senior pastor at Hyde Park United Methodist Church in Tampa, Fla., since 1992. Before that, he was the founding pastor of St. Luke's UMC, Orlando, after having served at Howe Memorial, Crescent City, and Trinity Church, DeLand. A native of Pennsylvania, he is a graduate of Asbury Theological Seminary and has served in leadership positions throughout the church. He is the author of 10 books and numerous Bible studies and articles. He has served as a Teaching Congregation pastor for Duke Divinity School, where he chairs the board of visitors. He is passionately committed to effectively communicating the gospel through preaching. He has received honorary doctoral degrees from Asbury Seminary and Bethune-Cookman University.
Nathan Kirkpatrick is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church and a managing director with Leadership Education at Duke Divinity. He served the Asbury-Longtown charge in Hamptonville, N.C., before joining the staff at Duke Divinity School. Among his duties at Leadership Education, Kirkpatrick directs the Duke Course of Study in partnership with the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church, and leads Courage to Serve, the Institute of Preaching and other learning events for pastoral leaders. Kirkpatrick is a graduate of Wake Forest University and Duke Divinity School.