Lilly Endowment Grant Allows Pastor to Study in Jerusalem

Post a Comment » Written on June 11th, 2007     
Filed under: News
HILMAR, CA (June 11, 2007) – Bruce Metcalf, pastor of Hilmar Covenant Church, left Sunday for a sabbatical in Israel and southern Europe thanks to a Lilly Endowment Grant of $45,000.

The grant covers all the expenses for the four-month sabbatical, including transportation, lodging, meals, educational work, as well as someone to preach in his absence.

Metcalf, and his wife, Kris, will spend five weeks in Israel studying at Jerusalem University College, where they will take two courses: “The History and Geography of Israel,” and “Jesus and His Times.”

Following their time in Israel, the couple will travel through several other countries, including Greece, Turkey, and Cyprus. They will visit locations that played a role in the Apostle Paul’s ministry. Metcalf will maintain a blog detailing his trip.

Earlier this year, the church surprised Metcalf when the Sunday morning service was interrupted to throw him a surprise party for his 25th anniversary as their pastor. To read a previously published account, see “Surprise Party.”

The Lilly Endowment provides awards to pastors for renewal experiences. Metcalf’s grant was not part of the Evangelical Covenant Church’s Sustaining Pastoral Excellence program, which also has been funded by the Lilly Endowment.

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