Educating imaginative, resilient leaders for God's changing world.

Columbia’s S3 Project Offers Group Study Grants to Clergy and Church Professionals


Decatur, GA—Group project applications are being accepted through September 21 for participation in Columbia Theological Seminary’s S3 (Sabbath, Study and Service) Project. S3 offers small, self-selected groups of clergy and other church professionals the opportunity to design and participate in learning projects that strengthen their practice of ministry. Groups will receive $500 per person to fund their self-directed group work. Participants must attend two retreats, one in February 2013, at the beginning of their year-long project and another in February 2014.   

The application procedure requires a group proposal and individual applications for each group member. Information and application materials are available at
here or by contacting director of Lifelong Learning and S3 Project coordinator Sarah Erickson at 404-687-4526 or Groups will be notified of acceptance by October 15. 

“The project develops support groups, fosters skills and ideas for ministry, and offers opportunity for the development of creative approaches for learning,” Dr. Erickson says. Columbia’s role in the project is to provide resources, coaching, structure, and other support to the project’s peer learning groups.   A total of 60 groups and 350 individuals have been participated in S3 since it began in 2003. 

The S3 Project is supported with funding from the Lilly Endowment, Inc., which awarded the seminary the original grant in 2002 and a five-year continuation grant of $648,863 in 2008. “Columbia’s S3 Project was one of the 64 original projects in the Lilly Endowment’s Sustaining Pastoral Excellence initiative,” reports Dr. Erickson. “S3 provides a way to sustain pastoral leaders and contribute to the growing body of knowledge about the importance of peer learning and clergy excellence.”

Columbia Theological Seminary, located in Decatur, GA, was established in 1828 and is one of 10 theological institutions of the Presbyterian Church (USA). The seminary offers seven graduate degree programs: Master of Divinity, Master of Arts (Theological Studies), Master of Arts in Practical Theology, Master of Theology, Doctor of Ministry, Doctor of Educational Ministry, and Doctor of Theology in Pastoral Counseling. Currently 421 students are enrolled, representing 30 denominations, 34 states, and 10 countries. More information:  


Michael Thompson
Director of Communications

View All News Releases