NEXT Church is offering Fall 2021 coaching cohorts as part of our NEXT Steps Coaching initiative. Coaching cohorts are a combination of scheduled group cohorts gathered around a particular topic led by teachers and experts, along with individual coaching sessions in between those cohort meetings with trained/certified coaches to help you apply and wrestle with the topic for your particular context.

“This has been one of the best continuing education experiences and formats. The leadership was excellent and the format was accessible and engaging.”

“I am the happiest I have been at my call in 3 years because of the practices, pitfalls, and self-care I learned through this coaching cohort.”

“This whole experience has completely encapsulated my mind and body, and I can’t see anything without this antiracism lens.”

“The coaching cohort exceeded my expectations!”

Antiracism Practices for Faithful Leadership

Teachers: Jessica Vazquez Torres and Shawna Bowman

Coaches: Lakesha Bradshaw Easter, Larissa Kwong Abazia, Shani McIlwain, MaryAnn McKibben Dana, Alex Patchin McNeill, Brett Pinder, Zeena Regis, Martha Spong

Registration closes: October 1, 2021 

Whether your leadership has been centered in racial justice for decades or you are yearning to take steps to embody antiracist values in your ministry, this cohort will offer a space to learn, explore, and practice bringing racial justice to the core of your leadership. To accommodate more schedules there is a day or  evening cohort option.


Midday Dates/Time Wednesdays, October 6, October 27, November 17, December 8, January 5, January 26 at  2:00-3:30 pm EST (11:00am-12:30pm PDT)


Evening Dates/Time: Mondays, October 4, October 25, November 15, December 6, January 10, January 24 at 7:00-8:30pm EST (4:00pm-5:30pm PDT)


Braving the Burnout for People of Color

Coaches:  Larissa Kwong Abazia, Lakesha Bradshaw Easter, and Shani McIlwain

Date/Time: Thursdays, October 14, October 28, November 18, December 9, January 6, January 27 at 1:30-3:00pm EDT (10:30am-12:00pm PDT)

Registration Closes: October 8, 2021

People of Color navigate feelings of overwhelm, anxiety, anger, frustration, and weariness as leaders in the Church. This cohort will process the present, gain tools for readjustment, and strive for wholeness. Led for and by people of color, we will foster exploration and curiosity as we move toward resiliency together.


Conversational Leadership: Leading with Robust Vulnerability

Coaches: Ken Hood, Yena Hwang

Date/Time: Thursdays, October 7, October 28, November 11, December 2, January 13, January 27 at 12:00-1:30pm EDT (9:00am-10:30pm PDT)

Registration Closes: October 1, 2021

William C. Placher’s “Narratives of a Vulnerable God” is one of those books that challenge the readers simply with its title. How can the word “vulnerable” be used in the same breath that holds God’s name? God is almighty and powerful, anything but vulnerable, right? Similarly, how can leaders that interpret and speak the Word of God, be vulnerable leaders? Yet, we know that as leaders, we have a responsibility to live out our faith authentically. And we cannot avoid being vulnerable when we live out our faith authentically, because being vulnerable is a part of our essential identity as created beings. Being vulnerable or practicing vulnerability as a leader is not the same as being inappropriately burdening others with your unprocessed and unpacked emotional baggage. Being vulnerable as a leader means being honest and sharing your own experience that will help others to ask the appropriate questions for the true answers they are seeking in their own spiritual journey. In this Cohort, we will explore how to lead with “Robust Vulnerability” through cultivating conversations that are really worthwhile and meaningful.


Enneagram and Leadership

Coaches: Martha Spong

Dates/Time: Wednesdays, October 6, October 27, November 17, December 8, January 5, and January 26 at 2:00-3:30pm EDT (11:00am-12:30pm PDT)

Registration Closes: October 1, 2021

The Enneagram of Personality is a system that describes nine ways of seeing the world. Each personality type has particular strengths that can be employed for effective leadership. By going deeper with the Enneagram, we can identify how we respond to being stretched and where we find release, become conscious of blind spots and triggers, and reflect on how we interact with the people we lead. The aim of both the cohort and individual coaching sessions will be to deepen essential strengths and develop new capabilities for effective leadership.


Next Steps for Antiracist Leadership

Coaches: Alex McNeill and Zeena Regis

Dates/Time: Thursdays, October 7, October 28 November 11, December 2, January 13, and January 27 at 2:00-3:30pm EDT (11:00am-12:30pm PDT)

Registration Closes: October 1, 2021

This deeper dive cohort creates spaces to maintain accountability and dig further into the necessity of an antiracist posture in the church. Participants will engage in the individual work that they must do to disrupt patterns and systems of white supremacy as well as analyze the systems and structures in which they find themselves. Only those who have already taken Antiracist Practices for Faithful Leadership Coaching Cohort may register for this next steps cohort.


Some partial scholarships are available for coaching cohorts.