A place to share resources, events, stories of our lives together in mission.

For every congregation to connect or re-connect its ministry directly to its particular mission field and become communities in which discipleship is a way of life for all God’s people. (BCMS report, p. 10)

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This medium is new to me. Computers and email are not

Congregational development is new to me and at the same time it is not. I am a member of Nativity and we are a long running experiment. Then again, maybe that is what we all are.

There are tasks laid out before a committee that has a number of members and needs to engage many more. We know that we want to communicate with all congregations and we know that the context we find ourselves in is as diverse as our geography and demographic.

It will take me a few days to load up a plan and set a discussion. Some of that effort may have to wait until August 18 when I return from the BWCA. (I am sure everything will be more clear when I return.)

To start the discussion, I think we need to think about our context while we dismiss the demographers convienent descriptions that we are willing to use to define ourselves as anything other than the children of God. How is that for a start?
Doug Maust said:
To start the discussion, I think we need to think about our context while we dismiss the demographers convienent descriptions that we are willing to use to define ourselves as anything other than the children of God. How is that for a start?

I think that's very well put. Shouldn't part of our reason for being a church community be to have real relationships with those outside our own demographic groups? Besides, I myself am uncomfortable being pidgeonholed as "young adult," or any other identifier, that simplistically determines the type of ministry I'm meant to need/want/enjoy.

I think ministries for those who identify in certain ways have a place—but as a way to open up, not limit, possibilities for us to encounter one another.
Mission is the essential element to organizational growth and development. That mission for Christians is defined best by prayer and proclamation of the Good News. The Holy Spirit guides any congregation into an ever deepening understanding of the Mystery of God and in that way continually is refreshed by its mission as the Body of Christ grows and developes.
I did a little work on breaking down the content of the BCMS report to turn it into action items. Take a look and tell me what I missed and what we collectively missed when we did the BCMS work. Part of the work is to plan an effort in time. We have to figure out how to take care of ourselves given what we are working through now in each congregation. We are not steady state and things for each of us keep changing.

I tried to copy the text in, but it lost formatting that made it more readable. I will try an attachment or see what happens when a file is uploaded.

Study current demographics of congregations and their contexts. See the word attachment The format carries so you can read the outline.
Attachments:
Ahead of a regional meeting, Sandy Obarski asked me (Doug Maust) what should we ask people to do to help us along in our effort to renew our congregations (GOAL 2). It seemed like and easy question, but we all know we have struggled to answer it. After reading Missional Church and Getting There Early all I could offer was:

o Collect stories about what caused their congregation to start, including the context that it started in and

o Ask those in attendance what was going on when they were at their collective best and

o Ask them to imagine what their congregation and our diocese is doing in 10 years given how they see the world today (have them say when internet use became commonly used. I can put my finger on when PC use started, but the internet is harder for me.) and

o Ask them what they expect of their relationship with the diocese.

What are your thoughts?
The entries I have read so far have inspired me to read more and to understand better what we might do to have concrete examples of the various Goals and Initiatives. I do agree that these are some good first thoughts.

I also am aware that we have done a lot of work at Nativity in the past number of years to understand ourselves as a community, both where we are today, where we have come from and how God might be leading us into the future. I am wondering if we have those reports in one spot so we can easily review our story and find out if there are gaps.

I have agreed to be a communication for Nativity and MSN. I have been involved with the BCMS and at conventions, but have some studying to do to catch up to where we are at today.
Here is the latest writing. It is the draft implementation plan for task two. Please comment.

The plan puts an emphysis on congregations thinking about what they have to offer others and when they should look for some help. By recreating the diocese as a network that facilitates sharing, congregations should be able to learn about where to go for help and who might use our assistance.
Attachments:
Doug Maust said:
Here is the latest writing. It is the draft implementation plan for task two. Please comment.

The plan puts an emphysis on congregations thinking about what they have to offer others and when they should look for some help. By recreating the diocese as a network that facilitates sharing, congregations should be able to learn about where to go for help and who might use our assistance.


This is the first time I (Sandi Holmberg) have tried to reply so I am not sure I am doing this correctly. I read the document that Doug posted. In one place it suggests that clergy lead a certain portion of this. Mostly that is good, but I want to post a reminder that some of the smaller congregations, especially in regions 1-5 have supply clergy only and would need assistance in participating.
Sandy,

During this planning effort feedback has come through other channels that we need to make a point of broadening the leadership responsibility so that the conversation happens. In a similar vein, I looked up from my work to read the great stories that are being related under Task Team One, Spiritual Development. Those stories are the core of what we need to communicate to and teach/encourage to other how to engage in.

What is nice to see is the great stories that relate the work of the church under goal One. While I don't want to, in anyway distract from these stories as the work of the church, I also think we need to create some dialogue about the business of the church.

Sandi Holmberg said:
Doug Maust said:
Here is the latest writing. It is the draft implementation plan for task two. Please comment.

The plan puts an emphysis on congregations thinking about what they have to offer others and when they should look for some help. By recreating the diocese as a network that facilitates sharing, congregations should be able to learn about where to go for help and who might use our assistance.


This is the first time I (Sandi Holmberg) have tried to reply so I am not sure I am doing this correctly. I read the document that Doug posted. In one place it suggests that clergy lead a certain portion of this. Mostly that is good, but I want to post a reminder that some of the smaller congregations, especially in regions 1-5 have supply clergy only and would need assistance in participating.

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