Students at commencement

CPL Site List

Looking for a CPL site? Please review this Site List for available options. Please pay careful attention to the abstract: if you are looking for a position in your concentration offering compensation, the abstract is where that will be listed. After checking out some sites, please mark your choices on your Student Preferences Form by September 15.

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Pilgrim Lutheran Church, St. Paul, MN

Address:1935 St. Clair Avenue
City:Saint Paul

Student Information

What kind of Christian Public Leader student would be right for you:Those interested in exploring the ongoing reformation of the church in our time and place.
How many students have you worked with in the past:approx. 15
How many rising students or seminarians do you work with currently:0
For this coming semester, what is the maximum number of students with whom you could work:5
What is the optimal length of learning for students working with you:1 semester|2 semesters|4 semesters
Why would this length of time be best:We are open to options; a variety of models could serve a student well.

Site Information

Site keywords:Shared ministry model, outreach to hungry minds & souls, creatively liturgical worship, progressive justice commitments, contemplative worship, explorations of cognitive inclusivity, implementing new strategic plan, expansive language, child-friendly worship, young adult outreach, college/university community context
What is your congregation or nonprofit organization all about:Our seven core values are:
Worshipping and Singing Together
Growing in Faith
Living Sustainably and Doing Justice
Robust Care and Celebration
Outreach and Welcome
Shared Ministry
Please tell us a bit about your site:Pilgrim began in 1921, as an English District, Missouri Synod Lutheran congregation and left the Missouri Synod in 1976. Has been on a journey of renewal and growth for over a decade. One of our signatures in the wider community is Celtic and Nordic contemplative evening worship. We are located in a context that values learning (in the midst of Macalester College, St. Thomas, and St. Kate's), as does this congregation. Currently, 570 members, 53% of whom are 40 years old or younger, and there is balanced age distribution among the other 47%.
Our mission statement: Pilgrim Lutheran Church is an inclusive Christian worshipping community that seeks, nurtures, and empowers hungry minds and souls to live generously in response to God's love.
Please tell us what a student can learn at your site:This is truly a community of hungry minds and souls, who ask great questions and are committed to journeys of spiritual growth. We usually have a theologian in residence for the year and a spiritual enrichment team of clergy who help equip our feeding of hungry minds and souls. Our core social justice commitments are: RIC, caring for creation, peace. One of our strengths that we are developing even more is our commitment to shared ministry, the deep engagement of all in various ministries in and beyond Pilgrim. We were chosen as one of seven congregations in the U.S. to participate in Yale University's 2014 Congregations Project. Our project is: An Embodied Wholeness of Knowing and Growing, in Worship and Community. One of our challenges is growing generosity among the dechurched and younger generations.

Mentor Information: Carol Tomer

Current position:Lead Pastor
Please tell us a little bit about yourself as a Christian public leader:Luther College, Harvard Divinity School, Luther Seminary ("Lutheran year"); I lead congregational pilgrimages to Holden Village and to the Iona Community in Scotland. Received a Lilly Endowment clergy renewal grant for a sabbatical on "pilgrimage as spiritual dehabituation." Have served at Pilgrim 16 years and in ordained ministry 27 years, including a mountain retreat center, campus ministry, international ecumenical ministry, and taught college prior to ordination. I find deep joy in ministry to the dechurched and those who live prophetically, yet with some sense of exile, at the edge of the Christian tradition. I believe the church is called to be a community of solidarity around the countercultural values of the gospel, values that none of us can live very well by ourselves.
Please tell us a little bit about yourself as a mentor of students:Christian public leadership is about holding text and context together, engaging our time and place. Walter Brueggemann's essay "Counterscript" continues to be a compelling expression of my hopes for my pastoral ministry and the church's ministry. With students, I like to reflect together on very short readings. And I invite students into an action/reflection model of learning, with dialogue and debriefing together being rich and energizing. Pilgrim invites seminarians into the full life and ministry of the congregation. A teaching parish experience is a place for practicing, for holy experiments in ministry, a laboratory of the gospel lived as counterscript.