The Heroic Leadership Institute is a boot camp for young (aimed at 18-35ish) leaders in the body of Christ. It is a 9 month full-time training program currently based in Lewiston, Maine (2012). With new sites starting in Denver, Colorado and Duluth, MN in Fall of 2013. The dream of HLI is to create a path within the Vineyard movement for our young leaders to be trained and released into significant ministry and as life-long lovers of Jesus and people. The hope is to create a green-house affect where the students are exposed in an intense way to three strategic venues of training:

 

Education:

Focusing in on the five core Vineyard values and our Biblical foundation, the students will learn from some of the best teachers and practitioners in the Vineyard, both through virtual and live interaction. For our pioneer year, we are partnering with Vineyard Bible Institute for 30% of our material to ensure that the students are exposed to such leaders as Derek Morphew, Gary Best, Alexander Venter, Bill Jackson and more. Currently on the live teaching scheduled is Phil Strout, Jay Pathak and Michael Gatlin with the Church Planting Task Force, Craig Simonian with the Vineyard Missions Task Force, Steve Hamilton with the VAST (Vineyard Anti-Slavery Task Force) and more. The 5 core values of the Vineyard will be expounded on from many different angles. Our desire is not only to expose the students to the teaching, but also to guide them as they process and help them apply the material to life and to ministry. Tests over the material will be project based (for example, making a video to convey certain parts of the Kingdom of God theology, Crafting a teaching spot for 5th  and 6th grade students on power evangelism, or leading a small group on communication in conflict.)

Different practical training streams will be introduced, as a preview. Exposure to these will help the student lean into the future. Each student may pick from one of the 6 streams (Justice/Mission, Church Planting, Business Leadership, Student Ministries, Worship or Multi-media) and will have 2-4 hours a week with focused attention on these venues. The goal is to help the young leaders of our movement see a path for them and their callings and gifting within the Vineyard. They will have monthly exposure to various “experts” in their stream around the globe via monthly live and virtual interactions.

 

Spiritual Formation:  

This aspect is a unique touch and at the core of the Heroic Leadership Institute. With exposure to and participation in the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatious, the student will have the opportunity to create a launching pad of self-awareness, ingenuity, heroism and LOVE, that may well serve them the rest of their lives. We are taking from multiple sources; both ancient and current to create 9 months worth of daily guided examines (guided prayer). The hope is that these young leaders would complete the training with both a deep and wide view on how they interact with their creator.

 

Participation:

On the practical side, the students will take this EDUCATION and SPIRITUAL FORMATION and will put it all into practice in local churches and communities, as well as one international outreach. We want our students to have their own “God Stories” and this only comes through taking what they are being exposed to in the classroom and taking it to the streets. They will have weekly rotations through different local outreaches in the Lewiston area. For our pioneer year, these include some faith based and some non-faith based organizations that work with the poor, the immigrant populations, pregnant moms, homeless and children. They will be doing weekly “power evangelism” or “treasure hunts” in the communities our church serves. Each week they will also be working in a different area of the local church so that by the end of the 9 months they have a glimpse of all the various ways to engage with a local church community and serve.

One of the high values of HLI is the local church. We want the students to graduate with as much love for the local church as Jesus has for “His Bride”. During their training, the students will be visiting a variety of different Vineyard churches that vary in size, style, target population, demographic and leadership. The goal is that we will shatter any illusion of their being such things as a “mecca” or “perfect church” but rather empower these leaders to go into any community across the globe, link arms with the local believers and engage in what the Father is doing in that particular community.

It is the full commitment of HLI to sow these students back into the churches where they have come from. Some may go to plant some type of church, others may continue their education or missional training. Regardless, each student will be sent off to go do great things for the Greater Glory of God and the well being of people!!