Ministry Skills

Member Services Purpose Statement

Member Services cultivates relationships and a feedback-rich environment with Unity ministries and leaders.  Through leading edge services and resources, we collectively prosper and evolve in spiritual community.


What is Ministry Skills Consulting and What Value Does it Bring to Your Ministry?

Ministry Skills is an area of Member Services comprised of a team of consultants who are trained and certified by Unity Worldwide Ministries. The consultant’s primary role is to create a container for discovery and exploration, allowing the members of your spiritual community to work together collaboratively, share ideas, and call forth the shared intelligence of your ministry.

The greatest gifts a consultant brings to your spiritual community are fresh eyes and a neutral perspective. They can help those in the ministry see the big picture and think more deeply about how to work together to better fulfill their mission. For an overview of our Ministry Skills services, see the Ministy Skills brochure.


What services are available through Ministry Skills?

We are continually in the process of evaluating and upgrading our services to bring to our ministries transformative, leading-edge practices that help them thrive. Our primary services are:

Board/Leadership Trainings: We offer 3 different trainings for ministry boards and leadership teams:

  • Essential Elements for Thriving Ministries in Today’s Ministry Culture: Focuses on the essential elements of ministry. Topics include: Unity’s thriving ministry model; emotional/spiritual maturity; and the primary functions of the membership, board and minister.
  • Accountability Development & Team Capacity Building: Focuses on building a coherent leadership team and creating a culture of accountability. It draws upon the latest brain research to call forth the highest functioning, enhancing your ability to thrive and evolve.
  • Conscious Culture Creation: Focuses on the intentional creation of your ministry culture, allowing you to consciously evaluate where you are, and live into the future you want to create for your spiritual community.

Honoring Our Past: Creating Our Future: Through a community process, members look collectively at their journey together, begin to identify organizational values and patterns of behavior, and make conscious decisions about their future.

Creating Intentional Spiritual Community: Community process for discerning the ministry’s core values, vision and mission. As these key factors of the organizational DNA are identified and explored, members can then begin to intentionally create the future of their community.

Facilitating Community Meetings: At pivotal moments in a ministry’s life in which big decisions are being made and where emotions may be high, skilled consultants facilitate discussion with a conscious neutrality that honors all the perspectives in the room.

Facilitating Conscious Conversations: Sometimes tensions arise between members of a spiritual community and they need assistance working through their differences with clarity and compassion—honoring one another’s perspective while clearly articulating how they see things. In such circumstances, our consultants can facilitate conscious conversations that create deeper understanding and increased capacity to work together effectively.

Transitional Consulting Services: When a minister leaves a congregation, many aspects of the organization are affected and many emotions can surface. Our skilled consultants allow the community to explore this time together intentionally and embrace a new future together. For more information about our transitional services, see our Employment and Transitional Services page.

For more information about our consulting services, contact Rev Cynthia Vermillion-Foster, Director of Member Services, at or 816.282.8741.


Ministry Skills Consultant Certification Process

We are dedicated to bringing leading-edge services to our members, and the certification process for our Ministry Consultants is designed to bring together a deep knowledge of the essentials of ministry with excellent skills in facilitation and community building. To achieve this, the certification process includes educational components, practicum experience, as well as an interview with experienced Ministry Skills Consultants.

Educational Requirements include:

  • Lombard Mennonite Peace Center Mediation Skills Institute
    This training is conducted by the Lombard Mennonite Peace Center which provides extensive skill-based training in mediation and conflict transformation. The intensive teaches collaborative problem-solving and healing strategies for work with conflicted parties and entire congregations.


Practicum Experience includes:

  • Teaching I of the Storm
  • Facilitating board/leadership training based on our Creating Dynamic, Thriving and Sustainable Ministries modules
  • Mentoring with a certified consultant on our Honoring Our Past: Creating Our Future process

Note: Additional training is required to facilitate our Vision/Mission/Core Values process or to become certified as a Transitional Consultant or Transitional Specialist.

To find out more, contact Rev Cynthia Vermillion-Foster, Director of Member Services, at or 816.282.8741.


Ministry Skills Support Team

When a ministry has lost the services of its minister there is a need to consider transition consulting. Comprised of three to five on-site visits by a ministry skills consultant/transition consultant, transition consulting can provide a dynamic and transformative process for churches in transition (three months following the loss of the minister and before the search process begins). Contact a Ministry Skills Support Team member for more information.


Thriving in Ministry

online support Thriving Ministry Model Workshop video and slide show files

Ministry Skills Process Overview document


Additional Resources

Ministry Skills Articles

Summary of Gary Simmons' Research