Through the Compelling Preaching Initiative, Lilly Endowment seeks to cultivate practices among aspiring and active preachers that can help them to proclaim the gospel to a variety of audiences in more engaging and effective ways. Eligible charitable organizations in the United States may submit proposals to develop new and/or enhance existing programs that present promising strategies to further the aim of the initiative.

Eligible organizations may submit proposals for up to $1.25 million that may be used for up to a five-year period to plan and implement their programs. The Endowment anticipates awarding approximately 60 grants to charitable organizations that submit the most promising and compelling proposals.


Charitable organizations in the United States with Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)(3) and public charity status are eligible to apply. The Endowment is especially interested in proposals from theological schools, colleges and universities, church resource providers, parachurch organizations and networks, national and regional denominational judicatories, and other religious organizations. Please read the request for proposals for details.

How to Apply

Eligible charitable organizations may submit an application through a two-step process below. Please read the Request for Proposals for submission details and access supporting proposal documents in the Resources section below.

  • Interest Form:  Submit an online Interest Form with Letter of Interest by March 1, 2023. SUBMIT INTEREST FORM.
  • Application Form:  Complete proposals are to be submitted by May 15, 2023 through the online Compelling Preaching Application Form. View Application Form.

Information Sessions

For a recording of the Compelling Preaching Initiative Information Sessions hosted by Lilly Endowment on January 12th and 18th, please email a request to

Email us at or view the FAQ.

Learn more about programs funded through a previous phase of the Compelling Preaching Initiative here.