The Institute for Emerging Issues is celebrating 35 years with a Forum to meet this moment in history

Over four days, February 15-18, 2021, IEI will host a series of meetings called ReCONNECT for the Future, built from the key discoveries we made during our last few years of the ReCONNECT program. Faith leaders, as always, are pivotal to the success of our gatherings. Faith leaders can attend for free.

Learn more

Faith Leader Lunch Club

We had such a moving time in 2020 talking with faith leaders every week, so we’re bringing back our open space calls! Every Thursday at noon, feel free to bring your lunch and talk with other faith leaders to process our experiences and questions with the pandemic, news, and community leadership. You only have to register once to be added to our calendar.
Join one time or every time- we’re here for you.

Register for IEI’s Faith Leader Lunch Club Here


Here are some big questions IEI is trying to answer with faith leaders and partners (taken from here).

A: We’re happy to help you and your team during this time. See below for contact information to set up a time to chat.

A: We can work with you and our communications team to get the word out. See below for contact information.

A: Resources (many in Spanish) on newest recommendations can be found on NC State’s Department of Health and Human Services website.

A: IEI hosts 6 rural faith leader Peer Networks with more information here. Let us know if you’d like to join or get more information on a particular Peer Network! Our next round of webinars will be early May 2020.

A: Talk to us about local opportunities we can direct you to and share what others are doing. Some statewide opportunities and ideas can be found here. Contact us about learning about and setting up mutual aid networks.

A: Every time you talk to a community or congregation member ask them to fill out the Census! Here’s faith-based resources to help you get the word out.

A: Reach out to someone on our team about your local context questions and challenges:

Email Ellen
Email John
Email Kylie


Want to be connected with faith leaders in rural NC?

Are you a faith leader in North Carolina? We’d love for you to join us next year as we tenderly and bravely walk in grief and hope together. Do you know faith leaders in your area doing incredible things? Faith communities that are struggling? Please connect us!

What Your Faith Community Can Do About Digital Inclusion Today

Connecting your congregation and community is possible for every faith community to try. Here are five digital inclusion (DI) practical steps to take right now.

MidSummer Liminality – What’s Our Job To Do?

The IEI team convened a Mid-Summer Zoom gathering of faith leaders (clergy and laity) and partners to discuss what’s going on within the network.

The Long Haul: Rest for Rural Faith Leaders?

This is the first in a series of blogs about how rural faith leaders across North Carolina are thinking of emerging issues around the coronavirus pandemic in their community.

What does “the best” look like for faith leaders right now?

Rural Faith Communities Program Manager Kylie Foley and Pastors Elizabeth and Jason Villegas share some of their “best” ways to cope and connect during COVID-19.

Allen Stanton: How the rural church can help during COVID-19

Our very own Allen Stanton (IEI’s first Rural Faith Fellow) wrote this article at the beginning of the COVID crisis for most of rural America. It’s a soft and firm reminder of how rural congregations can help their North Carolina communities.

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