Thriving in Ministry Initiative 2018

Request for Proposals

Lilly Endowment is pleased to announce Thriving in Ministry Initiative 2018. Through this endeavor, the Endowment seeks to support charitable organizations (especially organizations committed to supporting pastoral leaders in congregations) located in the United States in developing new or strengthening existing programs that help pastors build relationships with experienced clergy who can serve as role models and exemplars and guide them through key leadership challenges at critical moments in their ministerial careers. The primary aim is to help pastors thrive in congregational leadership and thus enhance the vitality of the congregations they serve.

Charitable organizations may submit proposals for up to $1 million that may be used for up to a five-year period to plan and implement programs. While the Endowment is interested in supporting a variety of approaches, it is especially interested in supporting efforts that: 1) attend to key professional transitions in a pastorís career and/or 2) focus on challenges posed by particular ministry contexts and settings.

In this open and competitive grants initiative, the Endowment anticipates awarding approximately 30 grants to charitable organizations that submit exceptionally promising proposals that advance the aim of the initiative and demonstrate the capacity of the organization to design, implement and sustain a high-quality program.


  • Please complete and submit an Interest Form to indicate the organizationís intent to submit a proposal. Interest Forms must be postmarked by April 6, 2018.
  • The links below provide complete instructions for preparing and submitting grant applications.
  • Proposals must be postmarked by June 1, 2018.

Links to Documents

The links below provide complete instructions for preparing and submitting grant applications.

Interest Form

This form indicates the organizationís intent to submit a proposal and names a key contact involved in this effort. Its primary purpose is to assist the Endowment in gauging interest in this initiative and in preparing for the review of completed proposals. Interest Forms are due by April 6, 2018 (postmarked).

Request for Proposals

This document provides guidelines for submitting full proposals to develop programs for this initiative. Proposals are due June 1, 2018 (postmarked).

Guide to Budget Preparation

This document is intended to assist organizations in preparing program budgets. Program budgets include two parts: 1) a detailed line-item budget and 2) a budget narrative that explains how you have calculated specific line items.

Lilly Endowment Forms

This document provides required forms that must be completed and submitted with grant applications. These forms include: 1) Proposal Summary Information Form and 2) Exempt Status and Foundation Information Status Form.


  Interest Forms Postmarked by April 6, 2018
  Proposals Postmarked by June 1, 2018


If questions arise as you develop the proposal, please email:

Please send your completed proposal to:

Jessicah Krey Duckworth
Program Director, Religion
Lilly Endowment Inc.
2801 North Meridian Street
Post Office Box 88068
Indianapolis, IN 46208-0068