Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center offers TRIM Course:

Pathways for Effective Leadership, Part II

Zoom Intensive (2 weekends - March 24 & 25, and April 28 & 29, 2023)

Randy Yoder, Instructor

This course is available to:

  • TRIM/EFSM students- fulfills one M/S Unit
  • Those seeking Continuing Education Units (2.0 CEU)
  • Anyone seeking personal and spiritual enrichment

 Essentially, this course is open to ALL!

 Course fee $309.00 (includes processing fee)

Registration deadline: February 24, 2023

Course Withdrawal Refund Policy 

  • 100% of course fee prior to registration deadline
  • 50% from the registration deadline to the first day of class
  • No refunds will be given once the class has begun
  • Exceptions require the approval of the Director of SVMC

To earn CEU credit, participant will:

  • Meet the attendance requirement
  • Complete the assigned reading
  • Engage in the course through  participation
  • Complete reduced assignments as  outlined in the syllabus

Questions: Contact SVMC at 717-361-1450 or email

Course Description

This course will focus on transformational leadership.  When the Body of Christ is struggling for effective ministry in a world needing Good News, it calls for creative thinking that is outside the box of the usual.  Change is difficult for any system and requires special insights and skills to prepare an organization for another way of living and practicing ministry.

The leader must be transformed as well as the church system.  Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch in ReJesus invite their readers to understand transformational leaders as focusing on Christology that will inform the character of ecclesiology that will then clarify missiology.

Course Objectives

  • Gaining a renewed commitment to make Christ the focus and the Body of Christ the emphasis for practicing vital and effective mission in the neighborhoods of our unique congregations.
  • Developing skills to build healthy and vital congregations.
  • Learning and practicing envisioning skills for assisting a congregation to move from maintenance and self-preservation to the active presence of Christ in the neighborhood.
  • Understanding what a missional fit is and how to arrive at that fit.
  • Learning how to read congregational culture and how to work at creating a missional culture.
  • Envisioning evangelism from a perspective of growing the Kingdom of God.
  • Learning to manage conflict that arises in a transformational process.

The course syllabus will be emailed to participants upon registration. 

Instructor: Randy Yoder

Randy Yoder has served as a pastor, District Executive in Middle PA, and church coach. He also has served on the General Board (prior to it being known as the Ministry and Mission Board) and was an independent staff person for Brethren Benefit Trust as a specialist in long-term care insurance. He has served as Interim District Executive for Atlantic Northeast District, Interim Pastor at Oakton Church of the Brethren in Mid-Atlantic District, and is currently serving as Interim District Executive for Western Plains District.  He has taught classes for TRIM and seminary-level students in the areas of leadership and polity and practice. He earned a D.Min. from McCormick Seminary in the area of not-for-profit organization and development.

Required Texts

  • The Bible—Gospels, Ephesians, and Colossians
  • Brubaker, David R. When the Center Does Not Hold: Leading in an Age of Polarization. Fortress Press, 2019, ISBN: 978-1-5064-5305-7.
  • Hirsch, Alan. The Forgotten Ways. Brazos Press, 2006. ISBN: 978-1-58743-164—7.
  • Rendle, Gilbert R. Leading Change in the Congregation: Spiritual and Organizational Tools for Leaders: An Alban Institute Book, Rowman and Littlefield, 1998. ISBN: 13-978-1-56699-2.
  • Woodward, JR. Creating a Missional Culture: Equipping the Church for the Sake of the World. IVP Books, 2012. ISBN: 978-0-8308-3653-6.
  • Robison, Anthony B. Transforming Congregational Culture. William B. Ferdmans Publishing Company, 2003. ISBN: 0-8028-0518-3.


The course will be held on March 24 & 25 and April 28 & 29, 2023. Classes run from 4:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. each Friday and 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. each Saturday, EST.


Distance learning, especially during intensives, requires students to be disciplined in their time management. Students are expected to do all preparatory work and assignments as listed in the syllabus. The syllabus will be emailed to students upon registration.

 Students will need basic computer skills, an e-mail account, access to the internet with an up-to-date web browser (Firefox, Safari, Edge, Chrome, etc.), and Zoom. While broadband is preferred, dial-up internet can be used for coursework, though video and audio resources may be difficult to use. 


Susquehanna Valley Ministry Center is a Church of the Brethren ministry education partner with the districts of Atlantic Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Middle PA, Southern PA, and Western PA, as well as Bethany Theological Seminary, Brethren Academy for Ministerial Leadership.