Financial Coaching for Seminarians

Competencies of a Well-Formed Stewardship Leader

Here’s a recipe for financial trouble: Incur tens of thousands of dollars in debt to prepare for a job that may not pay enough to let you make student loan payments AND provide for your family.

To help, a number of ELCA-related ministries are collaborating to provide one-on-one Financial Coaching to seminarians, as well as to make available resources that will assist them in being better stewards of their financial resources.

It is hoped that seminarians will learn not only how to handle their personal finances, but that they will bring an increased awareness of financial stewardship to the congregations and people that they serve.

The Stewardship of Life Institute is working with partners including the ELCA Board of Pensions, Thrivent, the ELCA office for  Congregational and Synodical Mission, the Lilly Endowment, and the eight ELCA seminaries: Gettysburg, Chicago, Philadelphia, Wartburg, Luther, Pacific, Trinity and Southern.

The result is a program of financial training and education entitled “Competencies of a Well-Formed Stewardship Leader.” The program is designed to help seminarians understand the world of money and finance, but especially how a disciple of Christ and leader of Christ’s church leader integrates financial concerns into a life of faith.

The coaches and students have their own place to access resources, to share ideas and questions in forums and blogs.  Go to the Financial Coaching Website. (If you are an ELCA student or coach in the Financial Coaching program and need access, contact editor Rob Blezard.)

Here are some resources that can help you even if you aren’t in the program.

Financial Competencies Materials

Competencies Overview. What does it mean to be a Well-Formed Stewardship Leader? This guide gives you clear direction.

Competencies of a Well-formed Stewardship Leader This is the guide Coaches and Seminarians use to direct their work.

Competencies Workshop Guide. This will guide you in a 75-minute workshop presentation about the financial competencies.

Scriptural Foundations for Competencies of a Well-Formed Stewardship Leader. Since the bible is the source and norm for our walk of discipleship, we turn to Scripture for guidance and inspiration.

Questions for facilitators for Competencies. This will direct coaches and facilitators in their work.

Life MinistryTool. This is a survey to help Christian leaders assess their understandings of Stewardship as it relates to their lives, to others’ lives, and to the church as a whole.

Student Finance Tools

Student Expense Tracker – Get a handle on what you spend.

Student Budget Planner – Map out a financial strategy.

Loan Repayment Calculator – Know what you’re getting into!

Other helpful links:

Financial Integrity – This site is designed to help people get control of their finances, instead of letting their finances control them!

Photo of coaching (c) 2008 Imagesolution, via
Photo of whistle (c) 2005 OJ the Photographer, via