HOPE CSA: A Hands on Organic Approach

HOPE is a novel approach to clergy education and care which makes use of the resources of Creation on a small, diversified family farm near North Manchester, IN. Observing the need for pastors to understand the organic nature of their work, this eleven-month course uses the farm as a practical analogy for living and working with a “flock.”

The first half of the day is spent engaging Creation and in conversation as the participants do light farm work, such as weeding gardens or tending the animals. At noon, a hearty meal of farm-grown food is shared, along with good conversation at the table.

The second half of the day is spent in prayer, quiet reflection, study, and discussion to consider the natural processes that make for “holy health”: a wide view of health understood in its spiritual, emotional, intellectual, physical, interpersonal, environmental and vocational dimensions. More information can be found on the HOPE CSA website and our brochure – Clergy Care (pdf).

Books being used in the past include “The Abundant Community,” by John McKnight and Peter Block; “Animals Make Us Human,” by Temple Grandin; “What Matters:  Economics for a Renewed Commonwealth,” by Wendell Berry; and “What I Eat:  Around the World in 80 Diets,” by Peter Menzel and Faith D’Aluisio.


In Northeast Indiana:

  • Tending the Shepherds Who Tend the Flocks:  Toward “Holy Health” in Pastor and People – 8am-4pm, third Mondays, third Thursdays, and third Friday.