WAYNE – Church members in Greater New Jersey are invited to bring their pastors to a day of resourcing laity to lead in their churches and communities. On March 3, “Take the Lead: Tools for Leadership” will be held at Bethany Wayne UMC in Wayne, NJ from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and will feature keynote speaker Rev. Mike Mather, pastor of Broadway UMC in Indianapolis, IN. A special afternoon session will be dedicated to applying learnings for ministry and community.
A graduate of Drew Theological Seminary and a faculty member of the Asset-Based Community Development Institute at DePaul University, Mather is the author of the upcoming book, “Having Nothing, Possessing Everything: Finding Abundant Communities in Unexpected Places.” Attendees will hear the story of an urban congregation that grew vitality by creating new ways to connect with people and community.
Additionally, Mather will lead a workshop on connecting with community titled “Name, Bless and Connect.”
“How do we connect in our communities?” Mather asks. “We begin with recognizing the giftedness of the people around us. We celebrate it and then invite and encourage connection.”
Rev. Jess Winderweedle and her team from Kingston UMC will share about leading ministry with millennials in a workshop called “More Than Just Coffee.”
Designed for churches looking to connect with millennials but uncertain about where to begin, workshop attendees will hear from the team at Kingston UMC whose ministry with young adults launched the Feed Truck and then has gone beyond.
Rev. Gina Yeske, Director of Small Groups, will be presenting “Big Ideas for Every Small Group Leader” begging the question of what’s next for small group and uncovering new ways to bring vitality to a group’s ministry.
“Our communities are a mosaic of cultures, languages, abilities and orientations,” said Rev. Lyssette Perez of the UMC of The Rockaways. Along with her colleagues Rosario Quinones and Alma Matos, Perez will direct a Contemporary Bilingual Multicultural Worship Workshop aimed at providing tools and ideas to develop this kind of worship as a means of outreach to all people.
“For many years and generations, churches have been the one place that has been pretty homogeneous,” she said. “It has been said that eleven o’clock on Sunday morning is the most segregated hour of the week. However, if we walk through any city or town, we will see all sorts of people and shops, hear voices in different languages and smell a variety of foods from different restaurants. We celebrate the cultural diversity in our congregations.”
Perez encourages workshop attendees to bring open hearts, a Bible and any instruments they may have.
Seeing conflict as a transformative experience through leadership and conflict resolution will also be featured in a session led by Rev. Dr. Steve Bechtold, Skyland District Superintendent. Bechtold invites anyone experiencing a situation that needs resolution in one’s church, community or life to join a discussion to learn how to lead in the process of conflict resolution.
An afternoon plenary with Trey Wince, Director of New Disciples will explore how to take next steps and put learning into practice. Additionally, Rev. Jana Purkis-Brash, Executive Director and Brian Mickle, Director of Development, from the United Methodist Stewardship Foundation of Greater New Jersey will be on-site to provide resourcing information and answer questions.
To find out more about Take the Lead and to register, click here.