What is the Presbyterian Community of Practice?

A one year opportunity for young adults to live in intentional Christian community while putting faith into action.

Six commitments of this community:

  • Regular Spiritual Practices
  • Experience in Communal Living
  • Participation in a Worshiping Community
  • Discernment/Reflection
  • Communal Work Experience/Opportunities
  • Accountable Skill Building

Participants in this community will live at Menucha and will design and serve ministries in both rural and urban settings. Ministry opportunities are designed by participants in consultation with staff of Menucha and First Presbyterian Church. Specific ministries and work will depend upon the gifts, skills and interests of participants.

Each participant receives room & board at Menucha, and a monthly stipend. No fundraising is required. While being Presbyterian is not required to secure a spot in our community of practice, Presbyterian participants will qualify for student loan repayment options through the PC(USA).

We are seeking interested individuals between the ages of 21 and 30, for September 2019-August 2020.

  • Regular Spiritual Practices

Regularly engaging in spiritual practices, preferably on a daily basis. Examples of practices include but are not limited to: Bible studies, various forms of worship, book studies, scripture reading, and prayer practices.

  • Experience in Communal Living

Participants will experience aspects of living simply in a community of faith. This translates into community-made and shared meals, rotation of household chores, and limited community resources. Participants will engage in regular community meetings to remain both supportive and accountable to themselves and the larger community.

  • Participation in a Worshiping Community

Understanding the value of a connection to a broader Christian community, exploration of faith through various modes of worship is encouraged. In addition to participation in a worshiping community of a Christian tradition, this may also include visiting and observing other faith traditions and/or participating in different non-traditional ministries of local churches.

  • Discernment/Reflection

Solo and group discernment/reflective practices are necessary to allow participants to explore the questions of who am I, who is God calling me to be, how do I fit in community, and how can I continue to build community after this experience. Opportunities for practice of these discerned call are also necessary and may include service to the community through unique gifts, connection between participants and outside entities specializing in expressed interests, and the enabling of  autonomous choices.

  • Communal work Experience/Opportunities

Communal work is twofold in nature. Participants take part in the internal communal work to benefit their intentional community. It is done not out of a sense of obligation but rather increase understanding that each participant is an essential part of the whole body of Christ. Participants also take part in external communal work as a community to benefit others. External communal work emphasizes that the community exists to be active in the world; God calls us to a Holy task, therefore work is an act of faith.

  • Accountable Skill Building (professional/life/personal)

Understanding that the christian life is a journey and not a destination, our communities celebrate successes and affirm that failures are learning opportunities. Participants take part in professional, personal, and life skill building experiences. These experiences should be diverse and robust, depending in their nature on the ministry site. Examples of some skills can include cooking for groups, carpentry, group facilitation, public speaking, time management, grant writing, and many more.


Menucha’s mission is enriching lives through hospitality, education, reflection, and renewal. The biggest part of our work is providing meals, housing, meeting space, and one-of-a-kind outdoor space solely for nonprofit groups, education groups, arts organizations, and a wide variety of faith-based groups.  These guests come for the important work of planning, training, community-building, board meetings, spiritual enrichment, recovery, etc. They depart renewed, reinvigorated, and ready to do even more of the good work they do in the world. (As the airlines say, “Secure your own mask before assisting others.”)

Over the past five years, we have hosted some of Portland’s most active nonprofits, including these from the 2016 Give!Guide: Basic Rights Oregon, Central City Concern, Friends of the Children, Friends of the Columbia Gorge, Habitat for Humanity, Impact NW, Planned Parenthood, YouthBuild, and Urban League of Portland.

The rest of our guests come for programs we host here in music, art, and faith. A small number come for personal retreats, to think, pray, walk, heal, grieve, write, or just be.

Last year Menucha welcomed 8,287 guests and served 44,421 homemade meals. We nurtured 275 nonprofit organizations which, in turn, improved Portlanders’ quality of life by addressing poverty, the environment, healthcare, recovery, and more. We helped 967 artists and musicians do the work that feeds their souls.



FPC is a Christ-centered community, serving the spiritual needs of an intergenerational congregation. Through worship, education, fellowship, and outreach, we actively grow as disciples of Christ and become better neighbors to those both near and far.

Seated in the heart of downtown Portland, FPC is active in serving the community through its English Language Program, Friendly House Neighborhood Center, and Menucha Retreat & Conference Center, as well as other organizations within which members share their time and gifts.

From First Presbyterian’s 2015 Vision Statement:

What do we mean by “mission?”

Mission addresses the needs of our neighbors near and far, whom we are called to serve, especially
the vulnerable and disadvantaged. We serve these neighbors as individuals, as a congregation,
and in cooperation with others.

Why is mission important to us?

Mission is the natural consequence of worship. Worshipping God is our reason for being the
church. A worshipping church is a servant church, being the good neighbor as Jesus taught.
Mission is important because of the compassion it embodies, because of the services it provides,
and because of what it teaches us about our faith. Mission involves linking hearts and hands,
living out what we believe and striving for God’s kingdom of love, justice, and peace.

Strategic Goals for Mission
1. Encourage Session to adopt guiding principles by which the church engages in mission
resulting in a clearer focus. Such guidelines would include local, national, and international
2. The Mission Committee will implement the Session guidelines for selecting church-sponsored
mission activities.
3. We commit to expanding the number of those in our congregation involved in these missions
and the proportion of the budget that goes to mission activities.
4. We will develop a more accessible organization of our mission activities that better
communicates the opportunities for service available to a broader range of our congregation.


Community of Practice participants will receive room and board, plus a monthly stipend. There is no fundraising required. We are seeking interested individuals between the ages of 21 and 30, for September 2018-August 2019.

Are you ready to apply?

Apply online or download the application fill it in and send it via mail or email.

Questions? Call Spencer or Lori at Menucha (503) 695-2243.

Online Application Downloadable Application