Pastoral Internship Grant Application Guidelines


The Pastoral Internship Grant is available to congregations and church-related ministries in the U.S. or Canada that are interested in providing young adults with leadership opportunities within pastoral ministry.

Note: Organizations who are current FTE Grantees or hold current Lilly Endowment grants that are coordinated by FTE are not eligible.


Pastors and congregations play a major role in helping young adults see themselves as leaders of Christian communities. This grant offers faith communities the chance to provide high school and college age students opportunities to try on the mantle of leadership, expand their imagination about what is possible through the church, and affirm young adults’ call.

Applicants may apply for grants between $10,000-$20,000 for summer and academic yearlong pastoral internships, depending on the congregation or church-related ministry’s size and capacity.


The application deadline is February 1, 2021. Please submit applications before midnight Pacific Time on this date. 

Grant recipients are required to provide a mid-term and final report on their activities according to the type of internship offered:

  • Summer Internship:  3 and 6-month reports after receiving their award
  • Academic Year-long Internship: 6 and 12 months after receiving their award.

These are non-renewable grants.


Click here to submit an online application. Complete applications include:

  • Online application form
  • Cover Letter (1p.)
  • Proposal narrative (up to 4 pp.)
  • Project budget (1 p.) (download a sample template)
  • Financial information (most recent audit or annual financial statement)


FTE will evaluate applications using the following criteria. Proposals should demonstrate:

  • A supervisory context that includes at least one ordained clergy.
  • Internship programs that provide high school and college age students opportunities to explore pastoral ministry.
  • Internship programs that include mentoring and vocational discernment.
  • Congregational/organizational support for intern(s) and a community that will establish a space for intern(s) to explore, ask questions and reflect theologically on their experience and ministry practices. Support should include a team of 3-4 congregational/organizational members or leaders.
  • A desire to expose young adults to ways faith communities can be places where they can make a difference in the world.
  • A realistic plan to continue the internship beyond FTE’s initial investment.
  • A commitment to participate in FTE’s research project on pastoral internships.
  • A commitment to participate in Grantee Learning Cohort conference calls.


What should I include in my proposal narrative?

  • Description of the congregation or organization applying (no more than 400 words)
  • Explanation of why engaging youth and young adults in exploring models of pastoral ministry and Christian leadership committed to changing the world is important to your organization, its vision and mission at this time
  • Description of your access to diverse ecclesial networks and/or networks within communities of color; your experience working with these networks; your capacity and commitment to work with diverse networks beyond your own cultural and theological orientation
  • Project description (no more than 750 words)
  • Key project activities, along with vocational methodology
  • Key leadership and role
  • A strategy for evaluating the project's effectiveness 

Where can I download a sample project budget?

Click here to download a sample template. This should be completed and submitted as a part of your application.

I received this grant in the past. Can I apply again?

No, but please take a look at the other grants we offer.

I still have questions about my application and eligibility? Who should I speak to at FTE?

Feel free to contact Heather B.P. Wallace at any point of the application process.