Resilient Leaders Project

Cultivate a good life that supports
your good work.

1 year

4 multi-day learning modules

7 circle groups

You care about people, your community, and the world. So you do good work, work that’s for the common good. The work is meaningful — but it’s also demanding of your time, energy, and your very self. It may feel like doing good work infringes on having a good life.

It’s not just that you deserve a good life. Your vocation and community rely on more than what you do — who you are matters. Cultivating your own formation is a gift you give not only your own body and spirit, but to your work and those you serve. That kind of cultivation is what makes leaders and their communities resilient.

Resilience is not just the ability to get through challenges, but to actively become more healthy, whole, and holy because of those challenges.

We’ve designed a one-year program that trains pastors, changemakers in non-profits, social entrepreneurs — leaders doing good work on behalf of their community — to restore their inner resilience and live into their purpose regeneratively.

Multi-day Learning Modules

Identity: Learning Module I

Thursday, August 16 – Sunday, August 19, 2018

Identity is both gifted from God and formed through relationship. This 4-day workshop will invite you to a deeper understanding of how your life experiences have shaped you and your leadership, and to understand the story God is writing in and through your life.

This module is presented in collaboration with The Allender Center at The Seattle School and features teachings from Dr. Dan Allender.

Health: Learning Module II

Monday, October 22 – Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Moderated by Rose Madrid Swetman, this module will feature experiences led by and teachings from Doug Shirley, Angela Parker, Linda Wagener, Derek McNeil, Lacy Ellman, and Kate Davis. Participants will leave with a personalized plan to develop their well-being holistically, regeneratively, and flexibly.

Call: Learning Module III

Monday, January 14 – Wednesday, January 16, 2019

A strong sense of purpose that makes meaning of hardship is essential to long-term resilience. Where the Identity module looked to the past formation of your leadership and what has brought you to this point in life, this module will pick up your themes and discern where they might be taking you into the world now and next.

Context: Learning Module IV

Monday, April 29 – Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Resilience must be flexible in order to remain appropriate to the context. This module will build your ability to read, respond, and adapt to changing circumstances.


Participation in the Resilient Leaders Project will help you to:

  • Understand your leadership style and its formation.
  • Narrate where your story and the divine narrative intersect.
  • Grow in how you live into and lead from your identity as loved by God.
  • Reflect on and grow your spiritual, physical, and psychological health in a peer community.
  • Explore practices that heal the negative impact of stress and increase capacity to manage stress effectively.
  • Articulate your call and life’s purpose with flexibility to adapt to each new stage of life and ministry.
  • Discern how to love God, neighbor, self, and world authentically.
  • Examine how theology, care for yourself, and your cultural context interrelate.

“Resilient leaders don’t just 'bounce back,' they grow stronger from their experiences, and their crises becomes a crucible of formation. They make meaning from hardship and suffering in ways that better equip them to face future difficulties. Resilient leaders are realistic, but hopeful; they hold deep beliefs, but they also are flexible and able to improvise. Resilience is an essential quality for leaders and their organizations if they are to succeed at their mission. ”

Kate Davis, Program Manger for the Resilient Leaders Project Meet the resilient leaders team
Kate Davis Resilience


We understand that the time commitment to this program is substantial.

The design is intentional in order to allow you time and space to integrate each learning into your daily life. You will be asked to engage your full self — body, mind, soul — through engaging your past story, current practices, and future call.

The cost of the total program (4 cohort gatherings, 7 additional facilitated community groups) is $3,100. Travel, lodging, and most meals are not included. Tuition is not eligible for a charitable tax deduction.

We believe the impact this program will have on leaders and their organizations is worth the investment of your time, energy, and resources. And we don’t want costs to be a barrier. A limited number of scholarships are available; expressing interest in scholarships is part of the application process.

2017-18 Program Schedule:

Multi-day Modules:
Thursday, August 16 – Sunday, August 19, 2018
Monday, October 22 – Wednesday, October 24, 2018
Monday, January 14 – Wednesday, January 16, 2019
Monday, April 29 – Wednesday, May 1, 2019

90-minute Circle Groups:
Friday, September 28, November 16, December 14, February 15, March 15, May 31, June 14
from 10:00am-11:30am

Circle Groups

Connect with peers who understand the joys and challenges of leadership as you reflect on teachings and experiences, and as you integrate them into your daily life.

Each circle will be comprised of six participants. Two alumni of The Seattle School graduate programs will facilitate each circle. Circles will meet within each learning module and between modules for 90 minutes each.

Participate in this Project

Our pilot Resilient Leaders cohort is crucial for our research and development

Ideal participants understand their vocation as innovation for the church that is becoming: clergy, nonprofit directors or managers, social entrepreneurs, “not just for profit” business executives.

Participants should currently be employed in a leadership position and have completed some form of vocational or ministerial training.

Participants might be facing a personal or organizational crisis; they might be disillusioned with the system. Perhaps you feel you lack fitness, purpose, and/or community. We recognize that often the words “burnout”, “exhaustion”, and/or “loneliness” resonate with people who are successful in their work, though their relationships or health suffer.

The pilot cohort of the project will meet for the 2018-19 academic year and is invitation only. Participants will need to reside in the Pacific North West. If you are interested in being considered, please email

Applications for the 2019-20 cohort will be open in April 2019.

“The Resilient Leaders Project reflects The Seattle School’s foundational conviction that to be successful in a rapidly changing environment, leaders must become competent at reading the cultural context and responding to complex human needs.”

Dr. Craig Detweiler, President of The Seattle School
Experience a New Take on Resilience by Nikkita Oliver

Interested in applying? Connect with the RLP team

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