Friday, October 21, 2011
the one stand at mission shaped ministry
The mission shaped ministry course resumed in Adelaide on Wednesday night. There has been a 5 week break, in order for folk to enjoy school/university holidays, to reconnect with family and to have some time to put some legs on some ideas.
So we are now into the 2nd half of the course, when things get more practical, as we talk about starting new things, about growing fresh expressions to maturity, about discipleship and what is church.
Last night was also a bit of one-night stand. During the week, 110 Uniting Church ministers have been in Adelaide, at the National Ministers Fresh Expressions conference. Part of the week has included site visits, and so we suggested observing a mission shaped ministry course in action as an option. Given that the course is new in Australia, we hoped that this would help with momentum and understanding and sync well with the planning to extend the course into other states in Australia in 2012, especially with John Drane and Olive Fleming Drane offering train the trainer training in November this year (currently we have 25 folk booked in for that, from all of the Australian states, which is very exciting). Which meant about 60 new folk arriving on Wednesday night.
We set it up as a “fish bowl”; with the usual tables for participants in the middle, and then around in a U-shape seats for those watching. All had notes, but the interaction focused on the participants. Which felt a bit different, but they quickly got down to work and it seemed to work alright.
At least until 8:55 pm.
The plan was to separate over coffee, with the last 15 minutes being either a fresh expressions activity for regular participants. Or space for those observing to ask general questions of the course.
Just as people began to sort themselves, the bus driver announced he was leaving. At 9 pm.
So like a rush of air, the place suddenly emptied. The stand was over. With not even a chance for a quick debrief and a thanks and goodbye for the evening!