Swapping Stories!

The Healthy Congregations Task Force while getting into the work of helping to support the pursuit of greater health in all our congregations has had the privilege to hear stories of how congregations have been growing in health throughout the province.  We have been encouraged, inspired and challenged to think in new ways through hearing about God’s action in the lives of these congregations.  We want to be able to share that enthusiasm with all of you!

One of our goals is to give congregations some more ways to share their stories with one another.  We are going to start collecting videos to share through our youtube channel, facebook page and E-newsletter.

This is  where you come in….

We invite you to create a simple 3-5 minute video with your computer or smartphone.  Tell us a story about your congregation and how you see God working in your midst. 

It can be a story about: vibrant and enlightening worship, deepening faith through spiritual formation, experiencing God in mission and service, developing community with all our neighbours, living out stewardship in transformative ways, affirming leadership or finding purpose and meaning as a congregation

Whatever your story we want to hear it and we hope that by sharing our stories with one another the spark of God’s fire in our hearts will burn brighter and our congregations will continue to grow in health and vitality for years to come.

For more instructions on how to make a video and get it to us check out our website healthymoraviancongregations.wordpress.com under the tab “Tell me a Story

We can’t wait to hear and share your stories!

Peace,

Healthy Congregations Task Force

Resources added March 2014

ONLINE Resources: Spiritual Formation

Online Resources: Worship

  • Worship Experiences
  • This is a collective of ideas for creative and experiential worship services.

general online resources

Assessment Resources

  • “Creating the conditions to nurture hope” by David L. Odom
  • (link to article)
  • Matrix Assessment Tool published by Metropolitan New York Synod of ELCA
  • link to pdf

Recently added resources August 2013

Leadership: Ted Talks

STewardship: Book REsources

  • 6 Word to Build On and Live By: 
    • Week 1 – Live
    • Week 2 – Gather
    • Week 3 – Connect
    • Week 4 – Serve
    • Week 5 – Give
    • Week 6 – Multiply
  • (Link to PDF Version of 6 Words to Build On and Live By)

Online Resources: Worship

  • Still Waters
  • “Thoughts of a 2nd Generation Korean-American Pastor and Mother”  This blog includes resources for prayer stations, inter-generational worship and creative expressions of prayer.

Recently added resources May 2013

Recently added resources

General Resources:

  • Healthy Congregations Retreat Example from Christ Community Church, Maple Grove, MN.  
  • Pastor Jenny Moran submitted this retreat format that they used to engage their congregation in conversation about the characteristics of healthy congregations in their context.  Feel free to us the format or ideas from it in your congregations as you work toward greater health.
  • Healthy Congregations Website Workbook Final with Pictures 

Worship: Online Resources

  • Rethink Worship Website
  • From Rethink Webmaster: “In my experience, seeing or reading about what other churches do Sunday mornings often inspires me and helps me come up with ideas while planning for Sunday mornings. I hope this site can help point you to some fresh resources, inspire creativity and maybe save you some time. Stay posted to this site as I will add more pages, posts, and thoughts as I go.”

Leadership: Video Resources:TED Talks

  • Drew Dudley: Every day Leadership on TED
  • We have all changed someone’s life — usually without even realizing it. In this funny talk, Drew Dudley calls on all of us to celebrate leadership as the everyday act of improving each other’s lives. (Filmed at TEDxToronto.) (reposted from ted.com)

Community: Video Resources: TED talks

  • Ernesto Sirolli: Want to help someone? Shut up and listen!
  • When most well-intentioned aid workers hear of a problem they think they can fix, they go to work. This, Ernesto Sirolli suggests, is naïve. In this funny and impassioned talk, he proposes that the first step is to listen to the people you’re trying to help, and tap into their own entrepreneurial spirit. His advice on what works will help any entrepreneur. (reposted from ted.com)

spiritual Formation: Online Resource

  • Lectio Divina with Todd Spencer
  • “You are invited to join me in praying with one of the weekly lectionary texts on my Lectio Divina Podcast page (http://lectiodivinatodd.wordpress.com/)…“Lectio Divina” is Latin for “holy reading” or “divine reading.” It is an ancient Christian spiritual practice that allows a person or a group to pray with a brief scripture text. “(re-posted from website)

Recently added resources February 2013

Recently added resources

Community: Online Resources

  • Abundant Community
    • This website connects to the work of Peter Block and  John McKnight in the book, The Abundant Community (link to amazon).  Their focus on neighborhoods and community gives insight into the ways to work with current groups and structures to affect change.

Purpose: online resources

  • ABCD in Action
    • “ABCD in Action is your community – a place where we can learn together and from each other about how to apply the principles and practices of Asset-Based Community Development. Please join the discussion!”

Spiritual formation: Suggested Reading For LEaders

  • The Messy Quest for Meaning: Five Catholic Practices for Finding Your Vocation

“Drawing on lessons learned from Catholic monks and saints as well as his own experience, Stephen Martin has crafted five unique practices to help Catholics and other seekers grapple with life’s truly important questions and discover their calling in the world.”  (reposted from amazon.com)

spiritual formation: Ted Talks

Help Us Improve…Take the Survey!

We need your help to create a helpful and user friendly place to gather and share resources for healthy congregations!

This website has been created to  be a place to gather resources that can be helpful in developing the characteristics of healthy congregations. The characteristics, that were identified by Betsy Miller and the committee are: Community, Purpose, Worship, Spiritual Formation, Stewardship, Mission and Service, and Leadership. This site is now populated with resources contributed by various pastors and lay people in the Northern Province.  We are still adding resources and would love your suggestions!

The hope is that this website will continue to be populated by new resources. It will be a place to share things that have been helpful to pastors and to congregations as they focus on further developing the characteristics of health. We are going to make a survey up to help gather the responses but would also welcome helpful responses by email us. 
Thank You!

Take The Survey

Healthier Congregations Begin With Conversations

At the 2010 synod we received a few resources to help us re-engage our communities and congregations in conversations about health.  As a result many of us returned to our different ministry contexts inspired to work with one another to create healthier congregations.  Much like working to improve health in our bodies it takes quite of bit of work, time and energy to honestly survey our habits and then to develop healthier habits.  Little by little the improvement builds up we are aware that not only do we feel more rested, and maybe our clothes fit a bit better…but we find that our energy is better as we look towards further growth!  This site will be a place to collect resources that can be used in congregational contexts to begin, infuse, or share the conversations and processes of growing into healthier congregations not just in the Moravian Church of North America but for anyone seeking to share the Gospel with all of God’s creation!