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Growing From the Inside Out: Leading Your Congregation in Faith Development Joseph Priestley District Spring Conference Ap...
What would growth look like in your congregation?
HOW DO I GROW THEE?????? <ul><li>Growing the Numbers </li></ul><ul><li>Any congregation that does not develop an effective...
HOW DO I GROW THEE?????? <ul><li>Increasing internal stability </li></ul><ul><li>The task of building the community, creat...
JPD 2009 Growing Numbers Action in the Community Deepening Faith Internal Stability
In order to have a positive vision for growth, and in order to meet any challenge to the realization of that vision, we ne...
Faith is  not … <ul><li>Blind faith </li></ul><ul><li>Belief without true understanding, perception, or discrimination </l...
Faith is… <ul><li>A deepening of our Unitarian Universalist beliefs and principles. </li></ul><ul><li>A strengthening of o...
According to Thesauras.Com <ul><li>acceptance certainty confidence </li></ul><ul><li>hope loyalty reliance </li></ul><ul><...
So…let’s be clear   on what  I’m proposing here <ul><li>Faith Development helps members of a congregation better understan...
How do we promote greater faith development in our congregations? <ul><li>We start with leaders who are clear on what it m...
Write Your Legacy: How do you want to be remembered?  What have you done as a UU that you are most proud of? What have you...
<ul><li>Gandhi spoke of absolute values or universal principles that guide our conduct.  His were truth and nonviolence.  ...
<ul><li>Combining your legacy (what you have done) with your values (what you believe in), write your credo as it relates ...
How do you help members of your congregation create their Unitarian Universalist identities and live out their beliefs? Wh...
Behavioral Covenants <ul><li>“ A behavioral covenant is a written document developed by leaders, agreed to and owned by it...
A covenant involves the promises that people make in mutual responsibility and agreement.  As in any agreement between ind...
For your reading pleasure… <ul><li>Behavioral Covenants in Congregations . Gilbert R. Rendle,1999, The Alban Institute. </...
“ Love is the source and creator of life.  Love is the essential power that deepens our relationships and simultaneously e...
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Growing from the inside out powerpoint-shorter presentation

  1. 1. Growing From the Inside Out: Leading Your Congregation in Faith Development Joseph Priestley District Spring Conference April 17, 2010
  2. 2. What would growth look like in your congregation?
  3. 3. HOW DO I GROW THEE?????? <ul><li>Growing the Numbers </li></ul><ul><li>Any congregation that does not develop an effective method of recruiting new membership will wither and die. It is part of the mission of a UU Congregation to spread our faith. </li></ul><ul><li>Deepening the Faith </li></ul><ul><li>The ability of a congregation to challenge, support and encourage each one of its members to grow in the maturity of their faith, to deepen their spiritual roots, and to broaden their religious imaginations. </li></ul>
  4. 4. HOW DO I GROW THEE?????? <ul><li>Increasing internal stability </li></ul><ul><li>The task of building the community, creating organizational structures, developing practices and processes that result in a dependable, stable network of human relationships. </li></ul><ul><li>Engaging in loving action in the community </li></ul><ul><li>The involvement of the congregation in the world, or the ways in which the congregation wants its faith to make a difference in the world </li></ul><ul><li>Adapted from Loren Mead , More Than Numbers: </li></ul><ul><li>The Ways Churches Grow </li></ul>
  5. 5. JPD 2009 Growing Numbers Action in the Community Deepening Faith Internal Stability
  6. 6. In order to have a positive vision for growth, and in order to meet any challenge to the realization of that vision, we need to….. <ul><li>HAVE FAITH </li></ul>
  7. 7. Faith is not … <ul><li>Blind faith </li></ul><ul><li>Belief without true understanding, perception, or discrimination </li></ul><ul><li>An unconscious, almost mechanical allegiance to something in the face of compelling change or contrary evidence. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Faith is… <ul><li>A deepening of our Unitarian Universalist beliefs and principles. </li></ul><ul><li>A strengthening of our belief in and commitment to each other </li></ul><ul><li>A way of living that enables us to gain strength through conflict and adversity; to take extraordinary risks and to never lose confidence in who we are as a congregation and in what we can become. </li></ul>
  9. 9. According to Thesauras.Com <ul><li>acceptance certainty confidence </li></ul><ul><li>hope loyalty reliance </li></ul><ul><li>fidelity truth dependence </li></ul><ul><li>connection teaching principle </li></ul><ul><li>credence persuasion </li></ul>
  10. 10. So…let’s be clear on what I’m proposing here <ul><li>Faith Development helps members of a congregation better understand their UU identity. </li></ul><ul><li>This aids in growing the numbers as congregants go out into the world and speak with passion and clarity about UUsm. </li></ul><ul><li>Faith Development better supports each member’s journey in living out their UU faith both within the walls of the congregation and in the wider world. </li></ul><ul><li>This aids in both internal stability and loving action in the community by developing more leaders, promoting volunteerism, and enhancing social justice and social action initiatives. </li></ul><ul><li>Faith Development enhances an environment for overall growth by helping members live in covenant with each other in order to manage conflict, embrace change, and ensure open communication. </li></ul>
  11. 11. How do we promote greater faith development in our congregations? <ul><li>We start with leaders who are clear on what it means to be a Unitarian Universalist and are able to articulate it! </li></ul><ul><li>We encourage members of the congregation to develop their own UU identity through workshops, worship and involvement in congregational life that is clearly connected to Unitarian Universalist principles and beliefs. </li></ul><ul><li>We develop behavioral covenants with each other that aid everyone in living out their UU identity and principles. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Write Your Legacy: How do you want to be remembered? What have you done as a UU that you are most proud of? What have you received from your UU experience that has been most significant?
  13. 13. <ul><li>Gandhi spoke of absolute values or universal principles that guide our conduct. His were truth and nonviolence. </li></ul><ul><li>What are your absolute values? </li></ul><ul><li>Look to your legacy for the answers! </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>Combining your legacy (what you have done) with your values (what you believe in), write your credo as it relates to your Unitarian Universalist identity. This is a set of beliefs and guiding principles. In no more than two sentences, it must begin with the words “As a Unitarian Universalist, I believe…” </li></ul>
  15. 15. How do you help members of your congregation create their Unitarian Universalist identities and live out their beliefs? What programming, activities of congregational life, and opportunities for social action do you provide?
  16. 16. Behavioral Covenants <ul><li>“ A behavioral covenant is a written document developed by leaders, agreed to and owned by its creators, and practices on a daily basis as a spiritual discipline. It is a way of developing common language, common commitments, and an awareness of healthy behaviors.” </li></ul><ul><li>Gil Rendle </li></ul><ul><li>Obedience to the unenforceable: “that area of our lives of faith in which we submit to certain ways of living because we hold membership in a faith community that rests on beliefs and values that prescribe such behaviors.” </li></ul>
  17. 17. A covenant involves the promises that people make in mutual responsibility and agreement. As in any agreement between individuals, there will be times when we fail to live up to those promises. But the nature of covenant means that we grant one another the right and responsibility to call us back to the promises we have made.
  18. 18. For your reading pleasure… <ul><li>Behavioral Covenants in Congregations . Gilbert R. Rendle,1999, The Alban Institute. </li></ul><ul><li>The Almost Church . Michael Durall, 2004, Jenkin Lloyd Jones Press. </li></ul><ul><li>The Almost Church Revitalized . Michael Durall, 2009, Commonwealth Consulting Group. </li></ul><ul><li>Close the Back Door . Alan F. Harre, 1984, Concordia Publishing House. </li></ul>
  19. 19. “ Love is the source and creator of life. Love is the essential power that deepens our relationships and simultaneously expands our humanity. The more we are freed to be ourselves, the more we are enabled to give our lives away to others. The more we know of life-giving love, the more we find the courage to express and reveal the ground of our being.” John Shelby Spong Episcopal Bishop

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