About Kaleo Center

Calling Forth the World We Seek

No groups have greater potential to transform our communities than people of faith. We gather in common purpose. We develop bonds as strong as family. We hold visions of a healed world and commit ourselves to the work of justice and compassion. We are poised to be a sustaining force for justice in the public square.

And yet.

And yet— as people of faith, most of us know more about how to pray and hope for change than how to inspire and create it. Our congregations care well for one another and engage in acts of mercy, but we also need to live out our roles as people of faith in the public square. We need tools and skills to help us work together, drawing from the teachings of our faith traditions to build relationships and shape a society that values all people as beloved.

And so…Kaleo Center.

Kaleo Center stands at the intersection of faith and public life, joining faith leaders and communities as powerful forces for change. We prepare and inspire faithful leadership for the world through our degrees, concentrations, certificates and trainings in social transformation. We research effective strategies, teach core competencies and strengthen the best practices needed for faithful social change.

This hurting world needs the engaged imaginations of people of faith: our deepest capacity, our strongest voice and our most effective action.

If justice is your calling, Kaleo Center is calling you.

Who We Are

Kaleo Center exists to enliven and provoke the best and deepest passions in persons of faith. We are building a multi-faith movement where spirituality nurtures our work for justice and justice nurtures our spirituality. We are uncompromisingly pro-LGBTQ, with racial justice and intersectional solidarity at the core of all our work. Kaleo Center exists because justice and right relationship are the heart and soul of faith. Throughout all of our work, we yearn towards a community rooted in love, and strengthened by the beautiful differences that sustain and embolden us. Thank you for joining with us in that possibility.

Kaleo Center for Faith, Justice & Social Transformation has four strategic priorities:

  • Igniting and Inspiring Prophetic Imagination
  • Convening and Connecting Communities of Faith
  • Preparing and Equipping Faithful Leaders
  • Advancing the Praxis of Social Transformation


Kaleo Center was born of vision and a void.

Founding director Steve Newcom received an Archibald Bush Foundation Leadership Fellowship in 2007 to research the intersection of theological education and social justice ministry. Newcom’s research revealed that while many seminaries teach the “why” of social justice ministry, (theory and theology) none were teaching students the practical tools to effectively engage in social justice ministry in congregational or community settings. Kaleo Center (formerlly the Center for Public Ministry) was founded in 2010 to change that reality.

About our name.

Kaleo—pronounced “ka-léh-oh”—is a word that connects two sides of our planet with two distinct origins. In Hawaiian, “ka leo” means “the voice.” In Greek, “kaleo,” means “to call,” “to invite,” or “to summon.” At the intersection of these thoughts is our name. “Kaleo” expresses our self-understanding as a voice calling forth justice across faith communities.

The word kaleo occurs more than 146 times in the Christian testament. It is at the root of many other words including parakaleo (to comfort), parakletos (an advocate or intercessor) and — most importantly — ekklesia, a gathering of the faithful.

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Welcome to Kaleo Center