Please join us for a day of learning and refreshment around the theme of Christian growth. We will spend the day in large and small group sessions, over lunch and in prayer and reflection sharing our experiences in adult Christian formation activities.
Come as an individual participant or part of a team from your church. Those who lead a small group, teach a class, run a formational ministry or are simply curious about effective approaches to accompanying others on their Christian journey, please join us!
9:00am- 10:30am Large group session 1
Worship / Opening Talk
10:45am Workshop 1
1:15pm Workshop 2
2:15pm Workshop 3
All workshops will contain a teaching element and an opportunity for participants to share their own wisdom and experience, as well as their questions.
- Mining the wisdom of “spiritual direction” for the whole congregation.
We will look at the growing interest in Spiritual Direction, and discuss ways that the principles of listening prayer, discernment and having a spiritual companion can be applied to everyday practices in the local congregation.
- Inner healing and authentic discipleship.
What are the connections between emotional health and spiritual health? What are effective ways to include a focus on emotional wholeness in our discipleship formation programs and practices?
- Christian formation: When social justice and spiritual reflection mix.
An important part of the Christian life is sharing God’s love in concrete ways to promote justice, peace and flourishing in our communities. Sometimes our activism can be separated from our spiritual practices, or our spiritual development can be overly individualistic or private. How do we integrate the two dimensions of discipleship?
- The role of imagination in the Christian journey.
Imagination has been overlooked, even suspect, at various times in the history of Christianity. What might it look like to value and cultivate the imaginative parts of ourselves as an important pathway to intimacy with God?
- Giving the sermon hands and feet in the life of the congregation.
How do we help people grow and be changed by the teachings they hear week to week in church? What are some best practices in teaching and learning that can give sermon themes more traction in the life of the congregation? How do we develop “doers,” not just listeners, of the Word?
- Christian Formation: What’s teaching got to do with it?
Christian education activities, at their best, provide “information” as well as possibilities for “transformation” in the process of “formation” into the being and likeness of Christ. How are we doing with this?
- Open forum: “Best practices” in adult ministries round table conversation.
Our facilitators will bring us together in a peer learning experience where participants share what is going well in their adult discipleship efforts and where we are puzzled, stuck, or discouraged. Bring ideas and questions!
- Alternate session: a guided meditation/ prayer and reflection.
Need some time to meet with God in a more experiential way? Take a break from the typical workshop conversation and come for quiet and refreshment in this guided time of imaginative, listening, reflective prayer experience.
Michelle Sanchez is the Pastor of Christian Formation at Highrock Church Arlington with extensive experience in areas of evangelism & spiritual direction. She is married to Mickey, who works with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.
Cheryl Lavornia is the Associate Pastor of Christian Formation at Christ Church in E. Greenwich, RI. She desires to develop people as they learn how God designed them and they use their passions to further the Kingdom of God. Cheryl is married to Dean Lavornia.
Teri Elliott-Hart is an adjunct professor. She has recently held teaching positions at Harvard Divinity School, Boston College, and Gordon College in the area of Theology & Christian Formation. A lay leader at Boston’s Covenant Congregational Church, she is married to Fred, the pastor of CCC.
Christopher Greco is the founding arts and worship pastor of the Greater Boston Vineyard. In partnership with his wife, Dorothy Littell Greco, Christopher has led yearly Living Waters programs since 1995, walking with hundreds of men and women as they find healing and spiritual growth in Jesus. His collaboration with Canadian worship leader Brian Doerksen, Prodigal God, is available as a double CD and in audiobook form see www.prodigal-god.com.