Become a Lead Innovator

CYMT creates a whole-person learning environment by nurturing residents academically in the classroom, vocationally in the local church, and emotionally through personal coaching and peer interaction.



Helping Congregations Reimagine Youth Ministry


The Center for Youth Ministry Training has been awarded a $1.1 million grant from the Lilly Endowment, Inc. to create an Innovation Laboratory for the faith formation of young people. We believe that the modern formula for youth ministry, which emphasizes gathering peer-based groups as the dominant model, needs updating. We believe we have been called to create and innovate in the image of our Creator. As we bring design thinking into conversation with practical theology, we want to help youth ministers develop the ability to create and test new models and approaches that organically fit into their congregational context.



To this end, we are seeking 10 lead innovators to participate in our Innovation Lab. Our lab is designed to develop new practical models for ministry that are theologically grounded and which seek to better intersect with the real lives of adolescents. Lead innovators will spend 2.5 years walking through our Theological Innovation Process and prototyping their ideas for youth ministry alongside teams from their congregations. As a lead innovator, you will be paired with a coach to help you navigate the innovation process, and you will be in a cohort with other Innovation Lab churches. You and your church will both receive funding — a stipend for you, and seed money to implement your congregation’s ideas. A timeline of the grant can be found below.



Interested in learning more about the application process?





  • Jan. 18 – April 6, 2018

    Application Stage 1 open. Applications will be reviewed as they are received, and selected applicants will be notified on a rolling basis. We strongly encourage you to complete Stage 1 as soon as possible to allow yourself maximum time to complete the other stages if you are accepted.

  • Feb. – May, 2018

    Applicants will receive notice of their application status; those selected will move through stages 2-4 of the application process.

  • June 15, 2018

    Final selections complete; notifications will be made.

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