On Thursday, February 21, 2019, I (Krista) attended an on-line webinar to learn more about a CRCNA initiative called “Resonate – Go Local”. Following is a summary of what I learned and some of why I think it would be a great framework for GNF to use to begin to move forward as a community.
I have presented this information to the Elders and the Leadership team and have asked them to think and pray about our potential involvement. Now, I’d like to ask our greater community to do the same!
I’d like to come to a decision about our involvement at the next Leadership Team meeting on Wednesday, April 10. Please direct your thoughts/comments/questions to me (krista at gnf.ca) before then! Thanks!
Report on Resonate – Go Local Webinar
Big Idea: The way we have ‘done church’ in the past, the ways we have reached out to and connected with our communities are no longer working. There is a disconnect between the church, struggling communities and governmental structures. A paradigm shift is in order: instead of asking “What can the church to do reach our communities?”, we need to ask “God Questions” – What might God be up to in our neighbourhoods? How do we discover where God is already at work? How do we participate more fully in what God is already doing in our neighbourhoods and communities?
Overview of Go Local:
- God is the primary actor and agent in the church and in the work of a local congregation.
- God’s future is among God’s people.
- God is calling us to trust the Spirit on a journey of ‘Adaptive Change.’
- Discernment is key.
The Going Local Process is shared action-learning journey to discern what the Spirit is doing ahead of us in our neighbourhoods and communities and to join with God there. It invites us to experience transformation by engaging in practices and then reflecting on what we are learning and discerning from those actions.
- Pastors’ Cohort – monthly meetings;
- Guiding Teams – local monthly meetings and cluster workshops every 3-4 months;
(I am proposing that the Leadership Team function in this role)
- Coaches – come alongside each Guiding Team and lead the Pastors’ cohort.
Why Go Local?
CRC Adaptive Challenge: Many of our congregations are reluctant to take risks to engage in mutual learning relationships, both within and without. Therefore, we lack mutual relationships with our neighbours and do not make meaningful connections in our local communities. Our defaults tend to be more programmatic and less relational, which keep us at a distance from each other and the “other”.
Websites & Documents for more information:
- Overview of the Go Local Journey (pdf)
Important to Know:
If we decide to commit and enroll in the Initiative, it would involve signing a covenant which includes a cost of $1000 per year (less than $100 per month); $500 of which is paid directly to your Resonate coach and the other $500 to Resonate Global Mission.
Why I’m excited:
- The process of Go Local seems to align with how GNF wants to be in the world – Spirit led and of benefit to our community
- I believe that this process also aligns incredibly strikingly with the prophecies and teachings John Parsons has already given us.
- The process is organic and experimental rather than prescriptive and programmatic. The emphasis is on deeply listening to God, deeply listening to our community and then trying out ways to build relationships and connect, always with an eye to learning as we go and not being afraid to ‘fail’.
- The process is focused on RELATIONSHIP. At GNF, we have seen the value of investing in building relationships. We have seen the results of choosing to sit in the discomfort of our disagreements and committing to listening well and communicating well and moving forward together. We are already primed for this work.
- GNF has been building a strong foundation of having a leader in every chair, but we are still fairly passive in our efforts to engage our community. So far the community has been coming to us and we have been responding as needed. It would be wise to begin to commit to exploring the ways God is working beyond our immediate property, too, finding ways that we can support and be supported by our neighbours.
- I believe that this generation’s REVIVAL will be RELATIONSHIPS. Who better to help communities learn how to be with each other in community than the church? Who better to model the communion of a Triune God than the church? Who better to be role models of healthy, messy, deep relationships than the church? And who better than GNF to show other churches that this paradigm shift is not only necessary, but survivable, and even thrive-able!