The Diocesan Consultant Network is pleased to offer a second Zoom-based Congregational Vitality Workshop on Saturday, September 18 from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. This workshop is grounded in our baptismal promises and uses adaptive problem-solving and models developed by the College for Congregational Development in the Diocese of Olympia as the basis for our work together. It is designed to provide you with opportunities for lay leadership development, and hands-on strategies for problem-solving and moving initiatives forward within your congregation.
This workshop is Zoom-based, and open to congregational teams with a minimum of three members, ideally including someone from the congregation’s leadership (a clergy member or warden). Once registered, teams will be assigned a diocesan consultant to work with them during the workshop, meet with the team at least twice following the Workshop, and accompany the team on a follow-up workshop (also Zoom-based), on October 30.
Workshop to be held on September 18, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
This year St. Bede is embarking together
on a period of discernment to distill its vocational vision as a unique
Episcopal community in Forest Grove. We are doing something audacious in this:
aiming to be cocreators with God in the New Jerusalem here at St. Bede. It is a bold endeavor, but we are emboldened
by the prayer, “Grant us so perfectly to know your Son Jesus Christ to be the
way, the truth, and the life, that we may steadfastly follow his steps in the
way that leads to eternal life.” Our trust in God will light our way.
Of course, there are dangers. The path to the New Jerusalem at St. Bede
will be paved with deep listening, conversations, and trial and error. Make no
mistake, we will fail at times. We will disappoint one another and fall short.
It will be hard work. Many of the miracles of God are wrought through the hard
work of people striving together. The Israelites wandered in the desert for 40
years, Noah and his family built the ark through sweat and hard labor.
And we don’t do this alone. We are blessed with amazing resources at St.
Bede. We have a wonderful discernment
committee. We also have the triune God
and the Holy Spirit wending its way through this entire process. We have gifts
of prayer, and spiritual practices, and a process developed with the help of
diocesan facilitators at the Congregational Vitality Workshop last spring.
Our discernment process will continue
until Epiphany 2020, a good time to see things more clearly – in Epiphany, the
season of light. By then hopefully we will have 20/20 vision of our next steps.
Our Lenten program in 2020 will consist of finding ways to make our vision a
Besides the regular meetings and
conversations of our discernment committee, St. Bede will meet four times for congregational
conversations focusing on various areas that are sources of transformation for
us: Community Life, Christian Formation, Prayer and Worship, and Community
Service. We’ve chosen the triquetra, or
Trinity knot, as a visual model because, as in the life of the Trinity, our
life together at St. Bede dynamically impacts us as persons in discipleship, as
a church, and our wider community. We hope in all of these conversations to
synthesize our learning into a shared vision of where God is calling us as a
community of disciples in service to the world.
Please pray for St. Bede as we begin to share and dream about where God may be leading us. Pray for us as we dare greatly together to understand what the New Jerusalem will mean for us here and now. Let us remember to love one another through the process as Christ loved us and pray that St. Bede’s will continue to develop as an axis mundi, a high place, where God’s love flows through us and into the world like a healing river.