Peace Mennonite Community Church, Aurora, Colo.By William T. McConnell
Many people gasped in horror as two people disrupted a Sunday school class! To illustrate the importance of dealing with conflict and not sweeping tensions under the rug, transition pastor Pat Hobin planted a class member to question the teacher’s methods, and another to protest the interruption. When the tension caused by these comments was not dealt with (intentionally), the pastor stepped in to explain the role-play and present biblical patterns for dealing with disagreements in the body of Christ. This class was part of a transition-focused series, “What Is Community?”
Another series of Sunday lessons centered on “family dynamics.” We examined patterns of relating, communication styles, unwritten rules, dysfunctions, and personality styles. A personal trainer in the congregation guided us through the Myers-Briggs personality profiles, and we also examined talents and gifts that each member brings. The results are encouraging for preparing us for working well together with a new full-time pastor.
Worship services concentrated on the nature of God and of worship. We are pleased to see that as we renew our commitment to God and to one another, average attendance has grown by 25 percent.
Our pastoral transition process has included meetings in small groups to assess current ministries, and congregational meetings for historical reflection, identifying our salient values and considering future goals. All this is designed to help the congregation understand itself better and have a basis for knowing what qualities of leadership will be necessary to lead us forward.
Profession of faith: Amber Barrie, who has endured many challenges in her 17 years, spoke eloquently of God’s message of grace unburdening her from feelings of guilt and of assurance that God forgives and is always with her.
Wedding anniversaries: Eli and Hanna Gehman, 25th, March 17.
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