Have you found that service on the vestry has enriched your spiritual life?
Bishop Paul posed this question to his guests on the video prepared for the next renewal assembly scheduled for Saturday, February 11, from 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM, at seven sites across the diocese. The assembly, a retreat for current and future vestry members, is entitled “Empowered Leaders, Renewed Congregations.”
Joining Bishop Paul on the video are Raymond Arcario, who served as senior warden of the Cathedral Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem; and, The Very Rev. Anthony Pompa, Dean and Rector of Nativity.
The daylong retreat will draw from Neal Michell’s Beyond Business As Usual: Vestry Leader Development. “This book,” writes Michell, “is for those churches that are no longer content with business as usual. It is for those clergy and vestry members who want to be partners in ministry and mission as they explore new and create ways to do and expand mission and ministry.” Copies of the book will be made available to each vestry attending for a subsidized price of $10.00.
Drawing from Beyond Business As Usual, the retreat will engage vestry members in Bible Study and a number of “teaching” experiences, such as “Four Principles Every Leader Should Take to Heart.” The purpose is to examine appropriate, effective mental models of the vestry as a “learning community” that plays a significant role in the spiritual growth and renewal of the congregation.
Charles Cesaretti, Interim Missioner for Congregational Renewal hopes "that the retreat will enable every participant to respond in the affirmative to Bishop Paul’s query – Have you found that service on the vestry has enriched your spiritual life?”
Registration is open at www.diobeth.org until February 3.
Have you found that service on the vestry has enriched your spiritual life?
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
Registration is open for the Renewal Assembly III on November 12.
“Finding Your Voice” is the theme of the third Renewal Assembly, which will be held on Saturday, November 12. It will be a time when participants will be engaged in using the power of recollection to identify the blessings of their past to empower their voice to give shape and articulate the future.
The day will begin with a special video with Bishop Paul interviewing two guests. This will be followed by small group discussions and a time for corporate and personal prayer. The schedule will run from 9:00 AM – 1:30 PM, and will include a light luncheon.
The Assembly will be hosted at eight sites: Christ Church, Towanda; St. Mark’s, New Milford; St. Luke’s, Scranton; Holy Cross, Wilkes-Barre; St. John’s, Palmerton; Trinity Church, Easton; St Andrew’s, Allentown; and, St. Alban’s, Sinking Spring.
Registration is open on www.diobeth.org. The registration is found by clicking on “Register for Diocesan Event” on the right column of the homepage. Registration closes on October 31. All registrants will be assigned to the most appropriate host site.
Registration closes on Oct. 31.
Thank you for you support.
See you on November 12,
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On the Eve of Pentecost, Saturday, June 11, the Diocesan Congregational Renewal Committee will sponsor the second Renewal Assembly from 9:00 AM- 1:30 PM at eight sites across the diocese. The day’s organizing theme will be: Focusing on God’s Blessings – Connecting the Dots.
The day will begin with a special 18-minute video presentation. Three laypersons –– Liza Holzinger, a member and former senior warden of St. Andrew's Allentown; Lucy Kitch-Peck, a member of the Cathedral Church of the Nativity Bethlehem; and Warren Schotto, member and senior warden of Good Shepherd Scranton –– join Bishop Paul to discuss the gifts of the Spirit in their lives, how a congregation detects the gifts and opportunities the Spirit gives parishes. and how parish leadership detects the gifts in individuals and calls them forth.
A small group discussion follows to respond to issues surfaced in video.
The participants will then move on to an exercise in “Focusing on God’s Blessings.” This exercise will introduce the process of “asset mapping.”
Asset mapping begins with the recognition of the abundance of God’s gifts and talents. In the process of mapping out God’s blessings, the congregation can find an exciting, new and positive energy to break out of the negative cycle of need, dependence, and “survival mode” that congregations sometimes experience.
Following the exercise, participants will enter a time of prayer – private and corporate. We will begin with “prayer triads” where three people join to ask for prayer and respond to the prayer needs identified. Then, the entire assembly will join in corporate worship.
The host sites –– The Church of the Redeemer, Sayre; St. Paul’s, Montrose; Good Shepherd, Scranton; St. Stephen’s Pro-Cathedral, Wilkes-Barre; St. Peter’s, Hazleton; St. Mary’s, Reading; St. Stephen’s, Whitehall; and, St. George’s, Hellertown –– were chosen for easy travel, parking, and adequate accommodations. A luncheon will be provided with a “free will” offering to offset local expenses.
Registration is open on www.diobeth.org. The registration info is found by clicking on the “Register for Diocesan event” on the right column of the homepage. Registration closes on June 1. All registrants will be assigned to the most appropriate host site.
Bulletin inserts may be downloaded below. One B/W, one color.
Photos by Kat Lehman. From top: Bishop Paul with Liza, Lucy and Warren.
“The best part of the day was that we got together to share our ideas,” commented a participant at the February 19 Renewal Assembly. “Not only must we learn to listen to God but we must listen to each other. Hopefully, there will be more opportunities to have events such as this one.”
The Congregational Renewal Committee heard comments and requests such as this following the February 19 Assembly and has scheduled the next event for the Eve of Pentecost, Saturday, June 11, 9:00 AM to 1:30 PM, at eight new sites across the diocese. The day’s organizing theme will be: Focusing on God’s Blessings.
Building on the many positive comments and suggestions about the video, the small group discussion, and the time for prayer, the basic framework for the assembly will remain the same. The committee also heard the request that there be more lay leadership in the video and in the program.
In Focusing on God’s Blessings, the day will introduce the process of “asset mapping,” which is a recommended resource in the document From Risks to Opportunities (R2O). R2O suggests that “[w] hen the starting point is the recognition of the abundance of God’s gifts and talents, the discussion the congregation can ‘find an exciting, new and positive energy to break out of the negative cycles of need, dependency, and the inaction in congregations sometimes experience.’ ” (See Luther K. Snow, The Power of Asset Mapping: How Your Congregation Can Act on its Gifts, Alban Institute: 2004, pg. xiii.)
The eight sites will be: Church of the Redeemer, Sayre; St. Paul’s, Montrose; Good Shepherd, Scranton; St. Stephen’s Pro-Cathedral, Wilkes-Barre; St. Peter’s, Hazelton; St. Mary’s, Reading; St. Stephen’s, Whitehall; and, St. George’s, Hellertown. The host sites were chosen for easy travel, parking, and adequate accommodations. A luncheon will be provided with a “free will” offering to offset local expenses.
Registration is open on www.diobeth.org. The registration is found by clicking on the “Register for Diocesan event” on the right column of the homepage. Registration closes on June 1. All registrants will be assigned to the most appropriate host site.
Download the entire flyer in .pdf form here: Download PR II Trifold
At Moravian Theological Seminary ... Friday, March 25: Luther Snow will work with pastors, judicatory staff, and faith-based agency staff. The focus of the full-day workshop will be The Macro View: Building Partnerships. Saturday, March 26: The focus will be The Micro View: Strengthening Congregations. This full-day workshop (9:30 AM – 3:30 PM) is for the leadership of local congregations – lay and clergy leadership teams. More at http://www.moravianseminary.edu/conted/Spring11/assetmapping.html
By Charles Cesaretti
“Congregations, parishes, and other faith communities face daily challenges to our leadership, organization, and finances,” writes Luther Snow. “But we can choose to focus on God’s blessings. Empowering Congregations is a strategy that builds on our strengths, gifts, and assets. From appreciation and thankfulness for these gifts, we are led to connect our gifts with each other to get things done together we could not get done on our own. In the process, we experience the power of being part of something bigger than all of us.”At workshops on March 25 and 26, Luther Snow, the creator of Asset Mapping, will introduce the process of asset mapping and train congregational leaders. The Diocese of Bethlehem in partnership with other denominations, institutions, and agencies across northeast Pennsylvania is one of the sponsors of the event.
Snow has 35 years experience in community and group leadership. He’s led grass roots social and economic development efforts in inner city Chicago, and he’s sparked positive rural development approaches across the nation. He has published three bestselling books, including The Power of Asset Mapping and The Organization of Hope. In faith-based work, Luther has trained leaders of six national denominations and strengthened hundreds of congregations. Luther’s expertise includes community partnerships, financial strategy, university engagement, and social enterprise. He has a BA from Harvard and an MBA from the University of Chicago. He lives in Decorah, Iowa, with his wife and two sons.
“There are three immediate and general benefits of Asset Mapping that I have seen,” explains Snow.
“First, Asset Mapping helps us to recognize assets, strengths and gifts all around us – assets that are otherwise overlooked, taken for granted, unappreciated, or outside our vision.
“Second, Asset Mapping propels us to identify beneficial relationships and build on them in collaborative action. We “connect the dots” and find ways that we can get things done together that we could not get done on our own. We build on affinities of difference as well as affinities of similarity, and we build relationships outside our group as well as within it.
“Third, Asset Mapping opens up opportunities for action toward the greater good. As we ‘vote with our feet,’ we give each other permission to follow our own interests as part of the group, and experience an unfolding sense of a larger whole and a greater good. Because we are acting together, we shift perspectives, away from ‘us and them’ and toward ‘all of us.’ This wider perspective, in turn, illuminates new assets and opportunities and encourages us to invest further in the group, feeding the positive cycle anew.”
On Friday, March 25, Snow will work with pastors, judicatory staff, and faith-based agency staff. The focus of the full-day workshop will be: The Macro View: Building Partnerships.
On Saturday, March 26, at Moravian Theological Seminary, the focus will be: The Micro View: Strengthening Congregations. This full-day workshop (9:30 AM – 3:30 PM) is for the leadership of local congregations – lay and clergy leadership teams. Registration is $20, and includes lunch and snacks.
On Sunday, March 27, Snow will preach at the 8:30 AM service at East Hills Moravian Church in Bethlehem.
See Moravian Seminary Continuing Ed, http://www.moravianseminary.edu/conted/Spring11/assetmapping.html, for more information and registration.