find and use resources
Check out our new Special Report on Small Membership Congregations! This report provides information and resources helpful to leaders of these small and important congregations. Click here to access the downloadable report.
Check out photos from the Center for Congregations workshop A Celebration of Giving, facilitated by pastor and author Melvin Amerson.
Presenter Melvin Amerson talks to a workshop participant during a break at the Indianapolis event.
Most of us have attended workshops and conferences where a facilitator stands before the participants at the beginning of the session and pleads with folks to silence their phones and power down other technology distractions. Not this time. At the Social Media for Congregations workshop in Columbus, Doug Pagitt began the day with instructions for everyone to open their laptops, log on and have their phones at hand.
From mega-congregations to house meetings, many voices are calling for a new emphasis on spiritual growth, discipleship and mission involvement. A new paradigm is emerging which casts a fresh light on the importance of experiencing the faith and living it out. But what about all those policies and procedures for decision making congregations have often borrowed from Roberts Rules of Order and other secular sources? Is there a way to recast these in a spiritual way?
It’s a pretty impressive story: First Presbyterian Church of Sullivan, located in rural Sullivan County in west central Indiana, has been serving dinner to the community every Thursday night since March, 2000 - eleven years and counting. They skip Thanksgiving Day since there are other community-wide meals that day, but they’ve never missed any other Thursday.
Arkansas pastor Danyelle Ditmer didn’t like children’s sermons. In her experience they were usually poorly done, geared more to adults than children, and an interruption to worship rather than an integrated part of worship. So she decided to do something. Danyelle asked to become part of the pastoral "children’s sermon rotation" at the church where she served. And a new resource was about to be born.
Like people, congregations have many reasons for engaging with art, among them beauty, enrichment and renewal.
The New Media Project website and blog help congregations think critically about technology.
I recently visited a synagogue in Boston that has one of the most novel ways of saving energy I think I've ever seen. In their restrooms they've installed two way flush valves - push up for liquid waste, down for solid. The liquid only flush uses 30% less water. This one is manufactured by Sloan.
Perhaps you have been there. You are a member of your congregation’s governing body. In a motion that you support, the board has just decided it is once again time to engage in an intentional planning process to discover and articulate a vision for the next 3-5 years. Some of you around the table have served on visioning or strategic planning teams in the past.