Point University Awarded $1.25 Million Lilly Endowment Grant

Point University has received a grant of $1,249,440 from Lilly Endowment Inc. to help found and fund the Center for Compelling Preaching.

The program is being funded through Lilly Endowment’s Compelling Preaching Initiative. The aim of the initiative is to foster and support preaching that inspires, encourages and guides people to come to know and love God and to live out their Christian faith more fully.

Point University’s Center for Compelling Preaching will gather preachers into peer groups that will help them develop the craft of preaching (technique, style, and sustainable rhythms) and be more attentive to the context of preaching (the people and communities to whom they preach). These peer groups will pair pastors with seasoned mentors and will foster mutual encouragement and growth. In combination with the peer groups, Point’s Center for Compelling preaching will host larger events focused on preaching and the use of new media to expand the audience and increase the impact of our preaching.

“Point University is grateful to have received this grant that is so well aligned with its historical mission,” said Dean C. Collins, president of Point University. “From its earliest days, Point has been dedicated to training preachers and placing them in local congregations. This generous grant from Lilly Endowment enables us to amplify our mission and serve both new and veteran preachers alike.”

“With this program, our goal is to see the Gospel proclaimed more powerfully than ever, to more people than ever, and in ways that are more relevant than they have been in the past,” Collins continued. “We desire to see people grow in the likeness of Christ as a result of more compelling preaching.”

Point University is one of 81 organizations receiving grants through this competitive round of the Compelling Preaching Initiative. Reflecting the diversity of Christianity in the United States, the organizations are affiliated with mainline Protestant, evangelical, Catholic, Orthodox, Anabaptist and Pentecostal faith communities. Many of the organizations are rooted in the Black Church and in Hispanic and Asian American Christian traditions.

“Throughout history, preachers often have needed to adapt their preaching practices to engage new generations of hearers more effectively,” said Christopher L. Coble, Lilly Endowment’s vice president for religion. “We are pleased that the organizations receiving grants in this initiative will help pastors and others in ministry engage in the kinds of preaching needed today to ensure that the gospel message is heard and accessible for all audiences.”

Lilly Endowment launched the Compelling Preaching Initiative in 2022 because of its interest in supporting projects that help to nurture the religious lives of individuals and families and foster the growth and vitality of Christian congregations in the United States.

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About Lilly Endowment Inc.
Lilly Endowment Inc. is a private foundation created in 1937 by J.K. Lilly Sr. and his sons Eli and J.K. Jr. through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Company. While those gifts remain the financial bedrock of the Endowment, it is a separate entity from the company, with a distinct governing board, staff and location. In keeping with the founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, education and religion and maintains a special commitment to its hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana. A principal aim of the Endowment’s religion grantmaking is to deepen and enrich the lives of Christians in the United States, primarily by seeking out and supporting efforts that enhance the vitality of congregations and strengthen the pastoral and lay leadership of Christian communities. The Endowment also seeks to improve public understanding of diverse religious traditions by supporting fair and accurate portrayals of the role religion plays in the United States and across the globe.

About Point University
Point University is a Christian university based in West Point, Georgia, serving the next generation of cultural leaders motivated to live out their faith in the marketplace. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools’ Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), the University offers associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees in a wide range of fields for both traditional and online students.