Today I am with members of the Congregational Care Team at Resurrection on a semi annual (or is that bi annual…) team retreat that happens twice a year. A little help on terms?
In any case it is a time to look back on the year and plan for the year ahead. Overall an excellent time. I have been feeling good this week. Last night was our small group and we are in the second week of studying The Good and Beautiful God by James Bryan Smith. I will write a longer review after the study, but at this point highly recommend it.
Does your staff ever take a retreat together? What does that time together look like?
This past weekend I had the opportunity to be a part of a worship design retreat. It was a varied group of campus pastors, worship venue leads, pastors and others that came and went over the course of the weekend. It was time away from normal settings at Heartland Presbyterian Center – close to Parkville, Missouri.
The senior pastor had been brainstorming an outline of sermon series through 2010. For each of the series we took a look at unifying elements:
- Objective – aim of the series
- Hook – The ‘so what’; The thing that draws people in
- Tone – The feel, the emotional center of the series
I found it to be an overall effective exercise. We gained clarity around series’ through the end of 2009.
This month it has been an adventure to go to conferences, retreats and workshops. Throughout the month I attended:
- Kansas Area Professional Seminar for Ministry
- Kansas Area Self-Care Workshop
- Congregational Care Team Retreat
- Kansas West Board of Ordained Ministry Provisional Members Retreat
- Kansas East Residency Retreat
All of these events have been good, but it has been a lot of time out of the office. It has been an adventure trying to stay on top of the responsibilities for the N-R pastorate and also having the opportunity to network and stay in connection with other United Methodist Clergy.
I am looking forward to the second day of our retreat and particularly to hearing James Lucas speak. In preparation for the retreat, each of us read several chapters from his book – Broaden the Vision and Narrow the Focus (website). He will be with us both before and after lunch before we wrap up at 3:00 PM. Then back to Kansas City. It will be good to have the drive to help make the mental transition.
This morning I am headed with the team of senior staff at Resurrection to a retreat center in Missouri about 90 minutes away. I love to get away with other members of the staff to spend time together and dream about the future of the church. According to the last email update, here is the plan…
By consensus, the thrust of our time together will be to step away from the demands of our usual work to do three things:
- We will breathe, pray, reflect and be spiritually refreshed.
- We will form tighter, lasting, deeper relationships with one another.
- We will sharpen ourselves as leaders in God’s church.
This will be more of a retreat, in every sense of the word. There will be less time on future planning and more about just being together. I am looking forward to it.
Does that title make sense to you? It is going to make more sense to me this week. I am currently a probationary member of the Kansas West Annual Conference. I am in a time of preparation for ordination. One of the requirements for ordination is to respond to a series of theological questions in written form. I am taking part in this event – Kaleidoscope: Integrating the Variegated Life of Theology and Ministry – A United Methodist Probationers’ Seminar – in preparation for responding to these questions. From the website:
Candler School of Theology and Gammon Theological Seminary invite you to attend a two-day intensive lecture series for probationary members. The series will focus on the theology inherent in the questions required for full connection in the United Methodist Book of Discipline. Because these questions focus on the integration of theology and the practice of ministry, each session of the seminar will include a lecture presented by a faculty member or church leader followed by a presentation by an elder or deacon who will describe how they integrate that particular theological concept with their practice of ministry.
Nicole and I are going to be flying to Atlanta on Wednesday for this event and will be back on Friday. Are you going to be there? Make sure and leave a comment…
Today is another day out of the office. I will be joining the rest of the Congregational Care team on a retreat at the Ursuline Sister’s Convent in Paola, KS. Among other things we will be sharing our goals and projects as individuals over the next year to help guide our visioning as a team. Here are some of the things that I will be sharing:
- Continuing Education Retreat for Ordination Papers
- Equip others for blogging
- Collaboration with small groups and care
- Feedback on pastoral counseling
- Clinical Pastoral Education at St. Luke’s Hospital – Plaza
- Mentor Ministry as a Career students
- Internet Campus
- Vibe Worship Service
- Discerning involvement in the Open Source Liturgy Project with the General Board of Discipleship
I am really look forward to times away with team members. I am particularly looking forward to this time as it will include new team members – Jeff Clinger, Russell Brown, and Laurie Barnes.
What are you looking forward to in the next six months? How do you plan or retreat as a team?