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Year of Leader Formation: Investing in Ruling Elders and Deacons

Year of Leader Formation: Investing in Ruling Elders and Deacons

Resources for the Year of Leader Formation

Coming Alive in Christ "Each Christian Has a Calling" Hymn Regarding Ruling Elders
Webinar Series In the News Additional Resources


Regarding Ruling Elders Logo

Coming Alive in Christ: Training for PC(USA) Ruling Elders and Deacons based on the Constitutional Questions

Regarding Ruling Elders Logo

Now available at

This multi-session resource, delivered through Equip, the PC(USA)’s online training site, is created for the study by and training of those serving as ruling elders and deacons. Based on the theological principles of the constitutional questions asked and answered in ordination, study guides are provided for leaders using a monthly format to last throughout the year and for a three-session retreat format. While the English version is available now, translations into Spanish and Korean which include cultural adaptations will be added in the coming months.  


“Each Christian Has a Calling” Hymn 

Written for the 2021 Year of Leader Formation by David Gambrell, PC(USA) Associate for Worship, this hymn affirms the Christian vocation of each member of the church, rooted in our common baptism. The verses, sung in unison, describe the particular forms of service of those called to ordered ministry—as deacons (verse 2), ruling elders (verse 3), and ministers of Word and Sacrament (verse 4). The refrain, sung in harmony, emphasizes the communal nature of Christian ministry.

The tune CALLING is a David Gambrell original, created for the Year of Leader Formation. The second score is for the familiar tune VALET WILL ICH DIR GEBEN

Each Christian Has a Calling - CALLING (pdf)

Each Christian Has a Calling - VALET WILL ICH DIR GEBEN (pdf)


Regarding Ruling Elders: A Monthly Series for Serving Faithfully

Regarding Ruling Elders Logo

Ruling elders are called to ministry in partnership with teaching elders. Within this calling, ruling elders have responsibilities in several areas of the life of the church including exercise in leadership, governance, spiritual discernment, and discipline. This long-standing series of articles that lifts up these responsibilities and ministries will continue in its usual format but with a leader formation thread running through each month’s issue beginning in 2021. The series will be written by Rev Dr Rodger Nishioka, Senior Associate and Director of Adult Educational Ministries at Village Church in Prairie Village, KS.

Articles available monthly at and with searchable archives at
Register here to subscribe to receive monthly email announcements about new articles in the series.  


Webinar series 

During the Year of Leader Formation, ruling elders and deacons will have an opportunity to join together in three webinars. The first of these webinars will take place on Wednesday April 14, 2021.  Registration information will be available here later this spring.  

Year of Leader Formation: Investing in Ruling Elders and Deacons
Discovering our Gifts – A Webinar
April 14, 2021; 7-8:30 pm (eastern)
Michael Gehrling

God has gifted each of us with a variety of skills, interests, and talents. As those called to leadership in the church, particularly to the ministries of ruling elder and deacon, many of those gifts are called upon in a variety of ways. Take time to explore and discover your own talents, how they can be used to form effective teams, and ways that we work together in community as God’s children. During this Year of Leader Formation webinar, you can expect to search within yourself while also being introduced to some tools to use in your own congregation.

In addition to a panel of leaders, the time will be led by Michael Gehrling who is the associate for the Northeast Region with the PC(USA)’s 1001 New Worshiping Communities. Michael also directs the 1001 assessment programs: Discerning Missional Leadership, Exploring Missional Leadership, and the Missional Leadership Quiz. Michael is certified by Gallup in Clifton Strengths, a tool he uses regularly with leaders and teams to leverage their talents and strengthen group dynamics. He is also the co-editor and contributing author of the newly released book, Sustaining Grace: Innovative Ecosystems for New Faith Communities. Michael is based in Pittsburgh, and when he’s not working, he can often be found enjoying his favorite hobby – west coast swing dancing.


In the News

For more information about the Year of Leader Formation, read about it in the PC(USA) News in English, Korean, and Spanish. To hear from contributors and users of Coming Alive in Christ: Training for PC(USA) Ruling Elders and Deacons based on the Constitutional Questions , read this article in English, Korean, and Spanish.   


Additional Resources for Leader Formation: 

Scattered Church provides resources for congregations to think through and care for the reality that congregations are finding new ministries to and with those who are not able to be physically present when the congregation gathers. 

Everyday God-talk series, which provides 10 minute conversations about faith and the realities of living out the faith now.

Daily Prayer app is available in both iOS and Android. It is an easy way to follow the discipline of daily prayer – it puts the pieces together for you, in your hand. Praying? There is indeed an app for that.

Call to Worship, a subscription publication, provides worship resources, suggesting hymns, themes, music for worship services. It also has articles on topics in worship, the church, and the world.

1001 New Worshiping Communities (New Church New Way) is an online resource that includes a podcast for leaders and includes  recent seasons on Covid-19, racial injustice, and passing down the faith.

PC(USA) Ruling Elder Ministries also offers a curated list of books, workshops, and other materials relevant to the ministry of ruling elders in the church.


As Christians, we are in a continuous process of growth in relationship with God, each other, and self. This is especially true of those who have been called to service in the ordered ministries of the church. During 2021, resources specifically geared toward this ecclesial growth will be provided for those currently serving, and those preparing to serve, PC(USA) congregations as ruling elders and deacons. 


News of events and resources related to the formation of ruling elders and deacons will be sent periodically to those subscribe.


Martha Miller
Ministry Education and Support
1.888.728.7228 x5751