eNews – August 2016

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Control vs Participation

By Executive Director Rev Dr Jenny Byrnes

“The opposite of control is not ‘no control’ but rather participation” – so says Richard Rohr in his article “Grieving as Sacred Space” written in January 2003. I read this some weeks back when preparing for a service and it has stayed strongly with me. So much of life is about being able to shape and participate – to influence the outcome in some measure or form. Participation is when (rather than being in control or walking away) one stays connected and interconnected.

So much seems uncertain on both local, regional and global life including within the CTM ministry and resourcing, as the ‘new’ starts to unfold, yet we are staying committed and participatory in what might be birthed. And it occurs to me that this is the same as learning, not certain where new insights might take us, not clear whether we can take in all that we hear and engage with, those new ideas and new possibilities, yet staying open to the experience and living with it.

Many of us were challenged in recent weeks with the insights and teaching through Wisdom’s Feast and other workshops across the Synod. We were taken to some new spaces, out of control of the outcomes, many of us stayed present and participated in birthing some new thinking and challenges for us in our faith and context.

Perhaps the prayer for our learning best be – may we not be in control, yet may we always find the pathways of participation.

Generate 2016 – Exploring Intergenerational Ministry

August 12-13      10am-3pm each day       Parkville

“Generational”, “multi-age” and “intergenerational” are the current buzz words in ministry with children, young people and their families. More significantly, this approach to ministry has been shown to be vital for sustainable, long-term faith formation and discipleship for people of any age. Generate 2016 – Exploring Intergenerational Ministry provides TWO great opportunities to find out more about this emerging trend in ministry with all ages.
Choose to participate in ONE or BOTH of the following Generate 2016 – Exploring Intergenerational Ministry events

Focused on these with strategic leadership responsibility in the life of a church – including ministers, pastors, ministry leaders and key volunteers – Generate 2016: Intergenerational Ministry Foundations will explore the theological foundation of intergenerational ministry, the place of intergenerational ministry in a church’s strategy and issues around the implementation of intergenerational ministry.

For anyone engaged in ministry with people of any age, Generate 2016 – Intergenerational Ministry Practicalities will provide opportunities for exploring what intergenerational ministry looks like in practice, intentionally growing generational connections and engaging with stories, tips and practicalities around the development of multi-age experiences.

Hurry-registrations close Monday 8 August!   Registration and more information

Open Space Technology

Do you want to learn new techniques in facilitating meetings and groups?
Other Synods are trying it too!

A two day event is being held for Ministers and church leaders at the CTM on August 24 and 25. Brendan McKeague will show us how a group (large or small) can be guided to set the agenda for a meeting, develop questions and choose what they want to explore. Just click on the link here to find out more and register.

Bible and Ecology: Reading scripture through ecological eyes

Monday 19 September 10:30am to 5:30pm (Australian Eastern Time) 

Join this national webinar to engage ecology and biblical theology
with scholars from around Australia and the world.

In recent years, in the context of growing ecological awareness, biblical scholars have been working to move beyond human-focused perspectives and read the Bible with a deliberate sympathy for the wider Earth community. In this full-day webinar, we will hear from scholars around the country about reading the Bible through “ecological eyes”, and will practice applying such lenses to scripture.

You are invited to join a hub in each state, or organise a small group in your local area to join in. It will also be possible to connect in as an individual but we recommend coming along to enjoy the benefits of face-to-face interaction.

Cost: Donation. Morning tea and afternoon tea provided. BYO lunch.

Registration and more information

Brought to you by Uniting Earth Ministry in collaboration with Pilgrim Theological College and theological colleges across the country.

Upcoming Events

August 2016

12 Generate 2016 – Intergenerational Ministry Foundation
13 Generate 2016 – Intergenerational Ministry Practicalities
24 Open Space Technology

September 2016

2-4 Recapturing Our Soul Conference
11 Radiate – September
14 Living Leadership – Intercultural Leadership
19 Bible and Ecology: Reading scripture through ecological eyes

Art of Story 2016

The good ship Art of Story is navigating its way to berth in November for your last chance to join this three day course. The crew will help you inhabit your own voice.  The flow on effect is so good there is now a story practice group of Art of Story graduates meeting monthly at the Centre for Theology and Ministry and applying their skills in their ministry contexts.  Do this course and you could join them!

Register now with a shipmate to share the journey.

Good Books

This month, we feature two texts written by our very own Co-ordinator of Studies – Systematic Theology, Rev Dr Geoff Thompson and our Co-ordinator of Studies – Missiology and Intercultural Theology,  Rev Dr John Flett. Both books are available from CTM Resourcing.

Disturbing Much Disturbing Many by Geoff Thompson

The first report of the Joint Commission on Church Union that led to the formation of the Uniting Church in Australia warned:  “If we go forward into a union on the basis of a fresh confession of the faith of the Church, we shall disturb much and disturb many”.

This book assumes that the posture of ‘disturbance’ runs through the Basis of Union, exploring its theological background – particularly its emphasis on core Christological claims – as well as bringing several of the Basis’ key claims into conversation with some of the UCA’s current theological debate

Apostolicity by John Flett (limited supply available)

What constitutes the unity of the church over time and across cultures? Can our account of the church’s apostolic faith embrace the cultural diversity of world Christianity?

The ecumenical movement that began in the twentieth century posed the problem of the church’s apostolicity in profound new ways.  In the attempt to find unity in the midst of the Protestant-Catholic schism, participants in this movement defined the church as a distinct culture—complete with its own structures, rituals, architecture and music. Apostolicity became a matter of cultivating the church’s own (Western) culture. At the same time it became disconnected from mission, and more importantly, from the diverse reality of world Christianity.

In this pioneering study, John Flett assesses the state of the conversation about the apostolic nature of the church. He contends that the pursuit of ecumenical unity has come at the expense of dealing responsibly with crosscultural difference. By looking out to the church beyond the West and back to the New Testament, Flett presents a bold account of an apostolicity that embraces plurality.

To purchase your copy/s please contact CTM Resourcing ctmresourcing@ctm.uca.edu.au or phone 03 9340 8800.