What could you do in your congregation to awaken and strengthen people’s sense of God’s calling in their lives?
Step 1: Listening + Learning
Listen to your congregation and learn where God may be calling your community.
Do 2-3 listening activities in your congregation to learn from your efforts in Year 1 as you begin to plan Year 2.
- Gather a focus group of congregation members. Read these suggestions for focus groups..
- Interview congregation members or community partners. Scroll to see interview suggestions under “Conducting a ‘Calling’ Interview”.
- Conduct a survey – demographic (Who’s actually in our congregation?) or thematic (What questions do our members have about their callings?) Learn more about how to create an effective survey here, and see PDF examples of surveys for adults and youth here.
- Map your demographics. Use this link to create your congregation’s own demographic map.
- Take a “walking tour” of the 1-mile radius of your church’s property. Check out this guide for tips.
- Conduct workplace visits with congregation members. Read about a pastor who visited & interviewed members at work about their sense of calling.
- Check out ideas in the Studying Congregations Toolkit: digging in the attic, using photos, making a “congregational timeline,” and stepping back to observe.
Choose two books to read as a team this year to deepen your learning on vocation. You may select books from the list below or propose other titles related to your project. Email your selections to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 2: Discerning
Discern your project’s focus by interpreting what you have discovered in listening to your congregation and learning about vocation.
Using 2-3 discernment activities, decide on the focus for Year 2 of your project:
- Lectio divina
- Visio divina
- SOAR analysis: Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations, Results
- Appreciative Inquiry
Discuss the following questions with your leadership team:
- What existing efforts from Year 1 do we want to continue? What new efforts do we want to take up?
- How are we integrating calling into different areas using the pray/study/work model?
- How will our efforts in Year 2 engage both personal calling and communal calling?
Step 3: Planning
Begin planning your project, drawing from what you have discerned and discovered.
- Complete the Project Proposal, Project Planning Chart, 1 Page Project Summary, and Budget Template — due July 15, 2020 or September 1, 2020.
- Jane and Jessie will provide feedback within two weeks of the due date, with any suggestions for modifications. Once the final proposal has been accepted, checks will be issued within approximately two to three weeks. To streamline the process and keep it moving efficiently, we highly encourage you to send draft proposals for feedback before the deadline. We want to stay in communication with you, as needed.
Step 4: Launching
Launch your project in fall 2020 based on what you have planned for Year 2.
- Upon acceptance of the Project Proposal + Budget, Year 2 funds will be paid to congregations to launch projects in fall 2020.