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Timeline and Process
The Chicago Plan generally follows the academic calendar. Each year begins in September and ends in May.
There are three training phases of the Plan: Candidate, Intern and Resident. Each phase is comprised of two years of training. Typically new participants enter in as Candidates during which time their gifts, calling and character are observed and tested. At the end of each year each participant is re-evaluated by the Session in order to determine if they should move on in their training. As participants move from Candidates to Interns and then on to Residency, their ministry responsibilities steadily increase.
We believe that effective ministry training is comprised of three basic elements:
During weekly meetings time is given to each of these elements by members of the pastoral staff. We believe the integration of these three elements, within the dynamic life of the church, provides necessary experience and understanding to effectively shepherd God’s flock.
Prior to beginning the year, each individual meets with a member of the pastoral staff to discuss the particulars of their ministry description. The ministry description outlines what the individual will be responsible for in the coming year of their training. Each description takes into account the passion, giftedness and training needs of the individual.