Spiritual Academy for Leading Transformation


The UMC Call to Action report noted that effective lay leadership is one of the four key drivers of vitality in local congregations. More specifically, the researchers found that healthy churches tend to have “effective and spiritually engaged lay leaders, rotating lay leadership, and pastors who work at developing and mentoring lay leaders.”  Consequently, this program is designed to identify, inspire, train, and support teams of spiritually-mature lay people able to partner with clergy to lead effective change in congregations and communities.


SALT-Virtual is a five-month program, January-May 2021, consisting of interactive learning sessions, a leadership challenge, collaboration with clergy, and team-building.

  • Learning Sessions: SALT Facilitators work alongside participants through a Zoom format to inspire excitement and commitment while exposing participants to excellent training around leadership principles and practices. Each meeting will include worship, teaching, and reflection and will explore topics like Leading Self and Others, Leading with Vision, Leading through Change, etc. Sessions are one Saturday morning and two Tuesday evenings each month, (See Link below to view Calendar.)
  • Small Groups and Teams: Through frequent small breakout groups, participants will build relationships while interacting around new learning. These groups will also participate in spiritual formation and gracious accountability. Participants are encouraged to enroll as teams from a local context (2-4 persons). At times, these teams will meet in breakouts for team-building and planning. 
  • Leadership Challenge Participants will covenant to implement a leadership challenge (ministry) around which they are being called to make a difference. This could be the launching of a new ministry or the further development of something already in place. SALT values team-based ministry; therefore, we are asking that teams of 2-4 from each local context participate in SALT together. 
  • Clergy Collaboration:  Each team will collaborate with their local church pastor (or missional network clergy leader). The team’s leadership challenge or ministry idea will be one that the pastor and church leadership has agreed upon prior to the beginning of SALT. 

SALT may be right for you if: 

  • A ministry idea keeps bubbling up, and it’s time to get it off the ground
  • There are 2-4 passionate laity ready to help make it happen

Cost: $250 per team   (2-4 persons from a local church, charge, or missional network) 

To learn more, contact Rev. René Wilt, Program Director – rwilt@wnccumc.net

Sponsored by: Catawba Valley District 



    Jan-May 2021      

(hosted by CV District)

All sessions will be held via Zoom Video Conferencing. 




January 9

February 6

March 13

April 17

May 8



January 19, 26

February 16, 23

March 23, 30

April 20, 27

May 11, 18