Unity in Christ:

Leading Diversity Conversations in Christian Schools

Thursday, September 28 – Friday, September 29, 2023

This fall, join your fellow school leaders for the 2023 Edvance Fall Leadership Retreat, featuring Dr. Esau McCaulley.

Esau will be speaking to Edvance leaders about his experience growing up in K-12 schools in the American South. We look forward to hearing about and learning from Esau’s experiences with racism, both overtly and in more subtle ways, within a K-12 school context. Building on his experiences growing up, Esau will be spending some time equipping Christian school leaders as you seek to lead your school communities into a more hospitable, unified, and Christ-like place for students to grow and flourish. Esau will share his powerful personal story, while also empowering leaders with concrete ideas and actions to take back to your school communities.

In addition to the keynote sessions, breakout session presenters will help equip Christian school leaders on topics such as: leading in a majority world culture vs. a western culture, sexual orientation and gender identity in Christian schools, women in Christian school leadership, and creating hospitable environments for students of different ethnicities and backgrounds. More details about these presenters will be released soon.

Keynote Speaker

Esau McCaulley

Esau McCaulley is an associate professor of New Testament studies at Wheaton College and is the author of many works including Reading While Black: African American Biblical Interpretation as an Exercise in Hope, which won numerous awards, including Christianity Today’s book of the year. His newest book is a memoir entitled, How Far to the Promised Land: One Family’s Story of Hope and Survival in the American South. Esau is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times and his writing has also appeared in places like The Atlantic, Washington Post and Christianity Today.

Breakout Sessions

  • Women Leading in Christian Education - presented by Edith van der Boom, Institute for Christian Studies
  • Leadership in Majority World and Western Contexts - presented by Mario Matos, Resonate Global Mission 
  • It's About the Process: A Framework for Conversation and Discernment in Christian Schools about Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity & Gender Expression - presented by Ian Timmerman, Edvance 
  • Giving a Voice to the BIPoC Community in your School -  presented by Perpetual Boafo and Ron Masengi, King's Christian Collegiate 
  • Another Look at WayFinder Conflict Transformation Practices - presented by Kevin Douglas, Colossian Forum
  • Capacity & Community: Neurodiversity in Christian Schools - presented by Sara Pot, CanChild


Courtyard Toronto Mississauga/West

This modern, easily-accessed hotel is nestled in the greenbelt and backs onto a forested area.

Address: 290 Derry Road West, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, L5W 1N6

A limited number of rooms are available for a special rate of $179 +HST. Make sure you are reserving in our room block to get this rate!

Book Now


Thursday, September 28, 2023

Arrivals begin 10:00 am

10:30 am - Devotions and Worship, Opening Session, Leaders Panel

12:00 pm - Lunch

1:10 pm - Keynote Session - Esau McCaulley: The Power of the Christian Imagination to Shape Young Minds

3:00 pm - Networking/free time

5:00 pm - Dinner and Keynote Session - Esau McCaulley: Inviting the whole community into your school: What it means to commit to a diverse classroom

7:00 pm - Social time (patio and firepit open)

Friday, September 29, 2023


7:30 am - Breakfast

8:30 am - Worship, Wonders & Wisdom, Praise/Lament/Hope

10:00 am - Breakout Timeslot A

11:15 am - Breakout Timeslot B

12:15 pm - Lunch

1:15 pm - Breakout Timeslot C

2:30 pm - Breakout Timeslot D

3:30 pm - Closing Circle



Edvance affiliate school registrants = $575 per person, plus HST

Other registrants = $750 per person, plus HST


Registration includes meals for the duration of the conference, and a copy of Esau's upcoming book. Hotel is NOT included in the registration fee - please see below for special rates.

Cancellation Policy: Please note that there will be no refunds for cancellations received after September 7, 2023. Substitutions will be allowed.



Courtyard Toronto Mississauga/West - 290 Derry Road West, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, L5W 1N6

Attendees of the Edvance Fall Leadership Retreat can book at the event hotel for a special rate of $179 +HST. A limited number of rooms are available at this special rate until September 7th. Make sure you are reserving in our room block - click here to book. NOTE: you may need to reset the default dates so you're only booking for Thursday night.