As the dialogue unfolded, it was clear there existed synergy between the missions as well as programs and operations, inviting the organizations to explore a deepened working relationship.
April 13, 2023
The new life of Easter is evident as we experience the abundance of being Easter people! This newness in these early days of the Easter season is particularly manifest in some good news we would like to share with you, our constituents.
The Leadership Collaborative (LC) and the Religious Formation Conference (RFC) have a long history of collaboration. Over the past several years this collaborative spirit has gained focus and clarity. Since midsummer of 2022, the Governance Boards of both organizations have engaged in a discernment process facilitated by Janet Mock, CSJ. The discernment process provided an opportunity to listen attentively to the needs of both organizations and envision how they can serve religious life now and into the future. As the dialogue unfolded, it was clear there existed synergy between the missions as well as programs and operations, inviting the organizations to explore a deepened working relationship.
We are excited to announce that the Leadership Collaborative and the Religious Formation Conference are entering into a 3-year pilot initiative that embraces shared leadership and collaboration in administration and programming.
We want to be clear: this is not a merger of the organizations. The LC and the RFC will remain autonomous in mission, governance, finances, and other organizational matters. Instead of one leader overseeing each organization, a co-leadership model will be utilized by both.
Effective July 1, 2023, we are appointing Linda Buck, CSJ and Ryan Hoffmann, DMin as Co-Executive Directors of the organizations. Together, they will oversee the LC and the RFC.
This new pilot structure is being created at a time of strength for both organizations. We believe the missions of each are well-aligned and that this new structure will provide more connection, resources, services, and innovation for our members and other constituents. We also believe this is a faithful response to the current and emerging realities of religious life.
Institutions everywhere are experiencing change and transformation, including the Catholic Church and religious life. As Pope Francis stated in 2015, “You can say today we are not living an era of change but a change of era.” In this spirit, leadership of both organizations continues to move forward in prayer and discernment, receptive to the dynamic invitation of the Holy Spirit.
During this Easter season, we are reminded that God is bringing something new into the world. We, too, embark on our own journey of new life and courageous hope for our shared future. Please pray for us during this time of transition and the beginning of this exciting endeavor.
Finally, we encourage you to read the question and answers (see attachment below) for more information regarding this collaborative effort between the LC and the RFC.
Mary Hughes, OP and Montiel Rosenthal, SC (Collaborative Board) | Leadership Collaborative
Wayne Fitzpatrick, MM and Nancy Gerth, SCN (Board of Directors) | Religious Formation Conference