A two-year mentoring program designed to train and equip church leaders of tomorrow.
TLC’s pastoral residents are full-time, salaried employees.

Program Overview

The Local Church Pastoral Residency is a two-year mentoring program designed to train and equip church leaders of tomorrow. Believing the local church, as God designed it, is the hope of the world, TLC seeks to provide aspiring church leaders with a healthy church environment to learn, grow, and practice ministry.

Why Consider Our Residency?

We look for those who are eager to explore what it looks like to work in a local church setting and who have felt a real calling from God to go into ministry. We offer a Residency for those who have just finished (or are finishing) their Seminary degree, or those who are ready for hands on ministry while pursuing a Seminary education.

Our Residency program seeks to be the bridge to transition from the academic world into real, hands-on ministry. It gives real leadership and responsibility in a ministry context paired with coaching and mentorship that prepares students to be launched into a vocation of ministry. For those enrolled in Seminary: upon completion (or nearing completion) of his or her degree, each student will serve a two-year residency at The Local Church on Pastoral Staff. For those planning for seminary but not yet enrolled, we offer an extended Residency experience that allows for simultaneous full-time Seminary enrollment. The Pastoral Residency, a full-time paid position with benefits, provides a wide range of potential ministry opportunities suited to each Resident’s gifts, abilities, and eventual ministry focus, with multiple opportunities for mentorship available.

What does a Residency look like?

A Residency at The Local Church is focused on real ministry in a coaching environment. We understand for some, this is the first real ministry experience they will step into. For others, this is an extension of their ongoing journey and calling into ministry. No matter what, the Residency aims to provide a full ministry experience in a local church context. This includes real ministry responsibilities to plan, execute, and maintain throughout the year and provides a chance to get behind the scenes and discover church life with various meetings and planning sessions to understand how churches operate. All of this is in tandem with training and development where mentors guide and help shape you in your ministry life. Discover practical ministry and formation-based Competencies that focus on ministry-specific areas and the life of a Pastor.

Who are we?

The Local Church Grand Rapids started 7 years ago on the East side of Grand Rapids. We are a multiplying church helping the next generation fall in love with Jesus to create better futures. We are a vibrant community who seeks to love our city and follow Jesus with all that we are. Check out our MANIFESTO to learn about what values drive us.

  • Some unique things about TLC:
    • We’re passionate about reaching the next generation: 75% of our church is under the age of 35. The most mature in Christ need to be doing the most sacrificing to intentionally pass the faith on to the generations coming up behind us. We are serious about reaching the next generation.
    • We are intentional about reaching those who do not have a spiritual home. 37% of those who attend TLC were not attending church before coming to TLC. We want TLC to be a place that people are constantly finding Christ, being captured by his love, and through intentional community living out our discipleship to him by sharing him with others.
    • We’ve seen well over 200 individuals give their life to Jesus or recommit their life to Him in the last 5 years and well over 100 public proclamations of faith through baptism.
    • We are trying to be both generous and intentional to invest back into the city we love through our partnerships with Ken-O-Sha Elementary, ICCF, and multiple social service organizations (Samaritas, Bethany, and others) to provide support for foster care/adoption/refugee placements throughout our city.
  • About Grand Rapids

    Grand Rapids is located in beautiful West Michigan and is one of the fastest-growing cities in Michigan. Just miles away from Lake Michigan, Grand Rapids is a thriving city of diverse people from all walks of life. Our city has a large medical community with multiple Hospitals and is home to large and influencing businesses and yet provides fertile ground for fresh start-ups and opportunities.

    For more info check out our church’s website or get to know our city some more.

The Process

  • Requirements

    The Local Church desires to select either seminary students or those able and ready to begin seminary (and work towards completing their degree within the time frame of the residency) with “integrity of heart and skillful hands” (Psalm 78:70-72) to participate in this program. Applications will be accepted for students in the spring prior to their final year. Applicants must demonstrate a commitment to following Christ, ministry leadership ability, a heart for serving the local church, and academic excellence.Those selected for the Residency commit to moving to the Grand Rapids area (either upon completion of their degree or prior to starting their degree), where they will serve at TLC as a Resident for two years.

  • Application Details

    Complete the application form

    Submit resume and references with application (instructions in the application form)

  • Next Steps
    • Applications are to be submitted by July 1 in the year prior to the student’s final year.
    • For those selected to continue the application process, virtual interviews will be scheduled in late July.
    • Finalists will be scheduled for a second interview in Grand Rapids in late-July.
    • Final decisions will be made and communicated by end of August.
    • FYI, we select applicants every other ministry year into the program. (2024 and 2026)
  • Questions?

    Contact Jordan Koller at


A two-year mentoring program designed to train and equip church leaders of tomorrow.
TLC’s pastoral residents are full-time, salaried employees.