Mentoring, spiritual formation, focused shaping and apprenticing
The vision and future of mentoring and apprenticing men and women for thoughtful and significant life and vocation carries the TGC highest priority. These individuals serve in every kind of vocation and assignment within their home country (“passport culture”), or in cross-cultural and international contexts. These unique relationships take on distinct shape, from the less-formal ones to spiritual formation, all the way through to intentional apprenticeships.
They take place with younger or middle year adults facing challenge and change of calling, vocation and gifts; they take place in the lives of older servants facing a significant crossroads in their lives and ministry; they take place in the steady pilgrimage of life and vocation where someone needs am intentional and kindred spirit colleague of long experience. What all have in common is the need for wisdom and counsel from someone who can walk alongside them with grace and insight, life scars and courage.
The vision of mentoring into “global servant leadership” speaks of guiding the life, skill set, spiritual gifts and dreams of the mentoree into a unique blend of servanthood, competency and leadership that is focused, though not exclusively, on the crosscultural world. The “global”dimension refers to life and ministry in the context of vocation within your own or across culture and geography.
Together we work to define a series of key terms, including mentoring itself, leader and leadership, styles and models of leadership, global, cross-cultural leadership, servant leadership. Together we sort out expectations of these open-ended relationships.The ministry of mentoring is carried out both in the USA and in other nations. Bill has two cohorts that he works with on a more intentional basis in the USA and one in Latin America. In 2013 and 2015 he spent significant time in South Africa, primarily mentoring. Some facets of this ministry require a face to face, and others can be handled by Skype and correspondence. He also works one-on-one with others both in the USA and outside of it.
Below are four sustained mentoring categories. They are sustained in that this is more than a once-off lunch or coffee. Each category brings its own strengths and values, with considerable overlap. To enter into one dimension does not automatically lead to a transition into another one.
Note: All of these categories are purposeful and have thoughtful overlap; while the first one is more general, the other three are more intentional. They are based upon agreed expectations that emerge out of dialogue to determine the need, the nature and the time framework of the mentoring relationship.
- Purposeful relationship yet less-formal, more flexible and less-structured. We meet face to face to dialogue as needed and desired. It can be limited in time or remain open ended. It can be done over a meal or in a home, by email, phone or Skype. In these cases the initiative comes primarily from the mentoree. Assignments can be discussed but are not required; they may be very valuable however. A session flows from 1-2 hours and can be on a monthly or bi-monthly basis.
- Purposeful relationship that focuses more on spiritual formation. It has parallels the first but is more open-ended, and distinct in focus and intention. The initiative comes from the person seeking spiritual formation. Assignments will be part of this relationship. A session can run from 60-90 minutes.
- Intentional mentoring relationship that moves into a kind of non-formal education. This is not an internship but it becomes a longer-term relationship of wisdom and experience, spiritual formation, self-analysis, growth and life-coaching towards personal and ministry goals. This relationship requires an investment on the part of both mentor and mentoree, because the process includes guided reading, key assignments and discussion of processes and outcomes. This can also include guiding a person through advanced formal studies, such as a specialized masters or doctoral program.
- Formal apprenticeship, structured, goal-oriented relationship with process and project components. It carries the language of life-coaching, of apprenticeship, of internship, or traveling with a person through a masters or doctoral program. It requires a more serious longer-term relationship with a substantial commitment on both sides. The dynamics of this level of relationship overlap with the ideas of consulting.
Dimensions 2,3,4 entail a regular financial commitment by the mentoree of his-her sponsoring organization or network.
The primary source of income to TGC comes from long-term ministry partners (individuals, businesses, foundations and churches) who have invested in the life and ministry of Yvonne and Bill Taylor since they left for Latin America in December 1968. These partnership donations are crucial to the future and broader ministry of the Taylors through TGC. They are welcomed and will be utilized according to the vision of TGC and the requests of the donor. The Taylors are keenly aware of and thankful that these global-minded friends intercede on behalf of the Taylors and God’s calling on them.
Donations to cover the five key services (mentoring, consulting, teaching, writing, speaking) are tax-deductible gifts made to TaylorGlobalConsult.