Growing congregations that are reaching beyond 100-to-150 in average attendance face one of the most difficult shifts in congregational life. The shift from pastoral size to program size means a shift from a pastor who does everything and whom everyone knows to a pastor-plus-other-clergy-or-professionls who provide leadership and who are known to different degrees and in different ways throughout the congregation. This shift in size and relationships is almost always challenging, creating everything from a general sense of joy and excitement to feelings of unease or outright conflict. The good news is that this kind of shift can produce wonderful new learning opportunities, new ministries, and new ways to engage your community. Join with other ministers in similar situations to learn together about the challenges of growth and change.
What Will You Learn?
* Characteristics and dynamics of this most difficult size plateau and how to navigate in the transition zone
* How to help your congregation discern God’s call by revising its own story and exploring its community context
* Understanding power, leadership and readiness in the midst of size transition
What Will You Take Home from this In-Depth Seminar?
* An outstanding learning experience led and presented by Alban Consultant Sarai Rice whose work has taken her into many congregations experiencing size transitions
* All materials you will use during the event
* Your own copy of the Alban classic Raising the Roof: The Pastoral-to-Program Size Transition, by Alice Mann (Alban, 2001)
* An extensive, annotated bibliography
* The tools and the confidence to help your congregation explore its community context, discover its own attitudes about size, and discern its sense of distinctive calling
Who Should Attend?
* Clergy and lay leaders from congregations with 100-to-150 or more in average weekly attendance
* Seminary faculty who teach congregational leadership
* Denominational and judicatory staff with responsibility for congregational vitality and church growth
What Else Should You Know?
* This event will begin with begin with continental breakfast on Tuesday, July 16 and following the afternoon session on Wednesday, July 17. Shared meals are an important part of the learning experience. Please try to arrange your travel in such a way as to be able to participate all of the shared meals.
* Scholarship assistance is available for clergy and lay leaders from small congregations. Click here for more information.
Who Is the Leader?
Sarai Rice loves to work with churches who are exploring their role in their community and visioning for their future – seeking to discern what and who God is calling them to be. She is skilled at planning and program development, as well as working with churches that are dealing with discord and decline. Besides her experience in consulting with congregations, Sarai’s background includes serving as a judicatory executive, seminary faculty, and pastoral leader in small congregations.