Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I hope you had a blessed Advent and a joyous Christmas. Now we head on into the new year! As we continue to live into the new model for our presbytery, the SW Regional Commission will be continuing to experiment to find out what we can do together that will be meaningful and helpful to our congregations and their leaders. Knowing how fast calendars fill up once you turn that page to January, there are a couple of events coming up that we wanted to let you know about. Further details about both of these will be forthcoming soon.
SPIRITUAL RETREAT FOR CHURCH LEADERS – February 22
Jesus said “feed my lambs…tend my sheep”. But how do those of us who feed and tend other get fed/tend to ourselves spiritually? Sometimes, we just feel “drained” or “burned out”, especially in the midst of a long, cold winter!
The SW Regional Commission Working Group on Developing Leadership offers a ½ day Retreat on the morning of Saturday Feb 22, 2014, focused on building spiritual resilience through Spiritual Practices (prayer, worship, community, the presence of the Spirit etc.) The retreat content is drawn from the Faith Leader Program (see www.faithleader.org) and is grounded in Richard Foster’s Celebration of Discipline. It is open to all Ruling Elders, Deacons and others in leadership roles in our congregations, including Teaching Elders who may be new to ministry/in associate staff positions.
SW REGION MEETING – Saturday, March 15 9 a.m. – noon Thomas M. Thomas Presbyterian Church, Chester
There are similar issues all churches face with ministry in a changing world. This meeting will begin with worship, then move into four “Open Space” options for information and conversation around four areas related to congregational vitality:
- Taking the Congregational Pulse: Assessing Your Congregation’s Ministry
- Moving Out of Your Comfort Zone
- Getting in Touch With Your Community
- Alternatives for Pastoral Staffing in the Small Church
All minister-members and congregational delegates are expected to attend, but this meeting will also be open to other interested persons from your congregation. Come with questions and ideas!
Finally, many of you have been involved with Chester Eastside Ministries over the years. This ministry has gone through some big changes in the last few months, but still continues to actively serve and advocate for the people on the east side of Chester. Attached is an update adapted from an article in the Swarthmore Pres. December newsletter that will bring you up to date on the changes. Please keep your prayers and contributions coming!
Grace and peace to you!Pam McShane Convenor, SW Regional Commission 610-742-0879 [email protected]