Father David’s post of 2021-11-12 — The Order of the Ascension is offering a three-session opportunity in December 2021 to reflect on several central issues and dynamics of every church. Participants will be from parishes throughout the country. There is no fee for the program offering through Zoom, but registration is required.
There are a number of dynamics that are true of all parishes: small and large, rural and urban, liberal and conservative. They were present in the Upper Room [of the Last Supper], the catacombs [where Christians hid], in parish churches in the age of Julian of Norwich, and in our church today. Understanding these somewhat hidden rhythms may help you as you work to shape the life and ministry of your parish community.
Parish Development Clinic, 4pm Wednesdays in December
PROGRAM LEADERS: Michelle Heyne, Robert Gallagher, and Poulson Reed, all members of the Order of the Ascension (OA).
The last year and a half has taught us the importance of being able to adapt to change. This has not been easy for many of us as we have had to confront and let go of old habits that simply do not work during a time of a worldwide pandemic.
An example of this was learning how to prepare and execute adult formation using the on-line platform we have come to accept or despise since the spring of 2020. (I am referring to Zoom.) A year ago, I invited members of SsAM to participate in an on-line course on spiritual practices offered by my friends at the Order of the Ascension. I have shared in past E-Blasts about the work of this dispersed religious order and its emphasis on developing healthy and vibrant parishes through coaching parishioners in saying the daily office found in the Book of Common Prayer and becoming more proficient with the flow of the Sunday celebration of the Holy Eucharist.
The Order is again offering an on-line course. It begins in early December. Click here to learn more about this course at: http://www.orderoftheascension.org/a-wonderful-and-sacred-mystery/
I invite members of SsAM to read the description of this course and prayerfully consider participating. If you wish to participate you will need to download or buy a hard copy of the book, A Wonderful and Sacred Mystery: A Practical Theology of the Parish Church, by Robert Gallagher and Michelle Heyne.
You may register on-line. Registration for this course ends on November 24th. I believe this course is very timely as it will happen during the season of Advent and my leaving at the end of the year. My goal has been and always will be to help parishes and parishioners to develop and practice a life of prayer that grounds everything that happens in a parish church.
If you are interested and would like more information, please reach out to me and I would be happy to discuss with you.
Fr. David+, OA