Recruiting for 2017

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Would you like to be more effective in your preaching? 

Do you sense a gap between the pulpit and the pew? 

Are you looking for practical ways to help your people encounter God?


We are currently recruiting the Fall, 2017 cohort. If you would like for your diocese or religious congregation to take part in this cohort, please contact us. The Marten program would be delighted to partner with you!


The Feedback Process:

Research tells us that people tend to see what they have always seen and do as they always have done. This can become true with preaching. We grow as preachers and as people by inviting others to help us to see and hear from a fresh perspective. The Preaching Academy is an opportunity for growth through receiving honest evaluations from others. Each participant, in turn, provides such help to his brother priests.
In addition, this feedback process will help you to reflect on these questions: 

  • Where are you?  Using original short- and long-term assessment tools, together we will evaluate the strengths and growth opportunities of your preaching. Congregational assessment tools will help you to get a stronger sense of the way your listeners grow in faith through your preaching; the process will also educate parishioners how to more fruitfully listen to homilies.   
  • Where do you want to be? Through a process of prayer, envisioning, self-assessment, peer support and critique, and homiletic expert evaluation, determine how you hope to grow. 
  • How do you get there? Each semester, you will set goals for small and manageable steps to improvement. This individualized plan will be based on your own assessed needs in relationship with your own particular parish or community.


  • Meet with your peer group once a month for two-three hours for the four months of the Fall and Spring semesters. Preach or bring a video of your preaching for your group to view once per semester.
  • Study the curriculum material and be prepared to take an active part in the peer-group monthly learning discussions.
  • Participate in the orientation session and summer preaching workshops.
  • Attend the Marten Preaching conferences.

How to Get Involved:

Our program partners with dioceses and religious congregations to recruit conveners who then recruit fellow priests to join them in this learning process. Therefore, we do not accept individuals by themselves. If you yourself are interested in this processs, please talk to your bishop’s office about entering into our second cohort of peer-learning groups. A diocese, eparchy or religious congregation agrees to support their priests’ growth in preaching with a contribution of $2000 per group per year.  In addition, we ask each priest to contribute $200 per semester toward program expenses.  

We are not currently working with Catholic deacons, but we have discussed doing so in the future. Please stay tuned for further developments.

The program asks each participant to make a two-year commitment to the process. After two years, each preacher may renew his commitment to his group or may begin a new group of his own.