Dear Friends: In August we had our first Mission/Connection Event and it went really well. We hoped it would spark pastors and churches to want to learn from each other, share resources, and inspire each other, and it did! We have one group forming over the value of discipleship and we hope to see more pastors connect with each other over common mission. We believe there is value in forming relationships with each other and sharing what we are trying to do to help our people grow closer to God and more fruitful as disciples. We will be having another Mission/Connection Event on November 1 at 7pm CDT via Zoom and one of the areas we will be focusing on is engaging our next generation of disciples by working together with others in our community. We are excited to share this story and hopeful to see where God will take it. We hope you will join us November 1 at 7pm CDT by using this Zoom link. — Chad
We are looking for a layperson to serve as our representative on the Commission on Nominations. The Commission on Nominations nominates members for the General Synod Council and all other General Synod commissions and agencies. A complete description of this role can be found HERE. If you are interested in serving, or would like more information, please email Chad.
We are also looking for delegates to General Synod 2023 (June 8-13, 2023 at Central College in Pella, IA). We need 2 Women Corresponding Delegates and 1 Youth Corresponding Delegate. The Women Corresponding Delegates attend synod and have privilege of the floor to speak and engage in all activities of synod except voting. The Youth Corresponding Delegate has the privilege of the floor to speak and engage in all activities of synod except voting, and also has special activities related to sensing a call to ministry. If you or someone you know would be a good fit for either of these corresponding roles, please email Chad.
Jesse Tree family devotions book: these popular online Advent devotions for young families, written by Rev. Grace Claus, are now available as a book, The Jesse Tree Story: A Family Advent Devotional. Journey through the stories on Jesus’s family tree to get ready to celebrate Christ’s birth. This family Advent devotional brings 25 Bible stories about the ancestors of Jesus to life for kids and families. Read these devotions daily leading up to Christmas. Each devotion tells the story of someone on Jesus’s family tree and corresponds to a symbol that your family can make and hang on your own Jesse Tree. Learn more by clicking HERE.
Honoring Indigenous/Native American Voices Thanksgiving Toolkit: This toolkit suggests resources to help you and your church honor and learn from Indigenous and Native American leaders around Thanksgiving. The RCA’s Next Generation Engagement Team provides suggestions for decolonizing your Thanksgiving with opportunities to listen to native leaders, and opportunities to practice your learning with prayer prompts and suggestions for new traditions to incorporate into your Thanksgiving celebration. It’s applicable to both Canadian and American Thanksgiving.
Does your church need a Fresh Start? This RCA resource details 8 different ideas and stories about churches who made a fresh start in order to bear more fruit for the Lord and in their communities. If this resources sparks ideas for you, make sure you contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Commission on Nominations is looking for committed, talented, passionate individuals to serve on RCA commissions, agencies, and boards. They may have more vacancies to fill than usual this year and the Church needs your help. If you are interested in serving our denomination, visit this link and download a profile to fill out and email back to the commission at email@example.com.
Free Christian Counseling for Pastors and Church Employees – The RCA’s Board of Benefits Services Employee Assistance Program provides free, confidential Christian counseling either at at an outpatient clinic in your area or via an online telehealth session. Up to 3 sessions per issue are provided at no cost to any employee of an RCA church. Some common issues addressed are depression, anxiety, work-related problems, marital issues, family issues, substance abuse, and others. The 24 hour hotline number is (833) 244-2490. For more information click HERE.
NEWS FROM CAMP MANITOQUA Fall Clean Up Day on October 22, 2022 from 8:30am – 11:30am. This is a great opportunity for families to serve together, students to earn community service hours, and individuals and organizations to bless Camp Manitoqua. Please bring work gloves, buckets, leaf rakes, shovels, tarps, leaf blowers, and anything else you might think helpful! Please click HERE to learn more and RSVP.
LINKS YOU MAY FIND USEFUL
5 Trends in Church Planting – Church planters are sent to form communities of witness in the world. But the world is changing rapidly. That means the way we form communities will also have to change. These changes are difficult, because they challenge our own assumptions and habits around community, theology, and mission. This article adapted from Daniel Yang of the Send Institute and formed from a discussion with church planters may be useful as you consider church planting.
Survey reveals what teens think of Jesus – A new Barna poll of over 25,000 teens in 26 different countries shows some interesting trends that the church can build off of as it seeks to reach the next generation.
3 Leadership Shifts for the Current Reality – Olu Brown says that a new paradigm of leadership is required given the challenges of the present age. Church leaders need to shift the conversation from problems to promise, shift their outlook from church to community, and shift the momentum by believing that miracles can occur.