Shaping a Discipleship Culture

I recently had the honor of leading a workshop at the 3D Discipleship event held in Williamsport, PA. The event was sponsored by Growing Effective Churches of the Susquehanna Conference of the UMC. Here are some of my notes from the workshop. Centre Grove’s Story I shared a little about what God has been doing … Read more

Extravagant Generosity

Jesus, consistent with the Old Testament,  speaks unabashedly and repeatedly about wealth, greed and generosity. In Mark 12.41-44, Jesus relates a story comparing the giving of the rich to that of poor widow who gives two very small copper coins. Jesus comments … They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, … Read more

Risk-Taking Mission and Service

Are you doing the same things that you were five years ago? Does your ministry (we are all called to ministry as followers of Christ) look the same as it did five years ago? As you discover your God-given giftedness, have those gifts developed beyond what they were five years ago? Have you discovered any … Read more

Intentional Faith Development

Bishop Schnase is clear in his definition that faith development happens outside of weekly worship and that it happens in community. Faith development involves practices by which “we mature in faith; we grow in grace and in the knowledge and love of God” (Cultivating Fruitfulness 43). Our spiritual growth never stops, it is never to … Read more

Study Group: Radical Hospitality: Be the Change

At West Side, we have just concluded a three-week study of Radical Hospitality, led by Ken Bodle. The class was approached in such a way as to not make Radical Hospitality a program, but to look at who we are at our core. We recognized that it is Christ who first welcomed us when we … Read more

Passionate Worship

I have always thought that worship is something difficult to describe. We can come to worship at a weekend service but that doesn’t necessarily mean that we have worshiped. Worship cannot be done for us. We don’t attend a worship service and passively watch others worship. We all are participants in worship. We all are … Read more

Radical Hospitality

Schnase defines Christian hospitality as “the active desire to invite, welcome, receive, and care for those who are strangers so that they find a spiritual home and discover for themselves the unending richness of life in Christ.” It is active: that means we have to do something! It is offered to strangers, those we don’t … Read more

Cultivating Fruitfulness

The theme this Lent at West Side UMC is based on Bishop Robert Schnase’s Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations: Radical Hospitality, Passionate Worship, Intentional Faith Development, Risk-Taking Mission and Service, Extravagant Generosity. The purpose of this study is to move toward greater fruitfulness for the glory of God. Schnase points out these five practices “are … Read more

Intentional Faith Development 3.0

A year ago, Centre Grove’s church council began reading Bishop Robert Schnase‘s Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations. I’m blogging the journey and have written several posts tagged Five Practices. It’s been a while since I’ve written about our experience with the Five Practices, partly because we’ve been slowly making our way through Intentional Faith Development … Read more

Bishop Schnase Visits Pennsylvania

Last week, Bishop Robert Schnase (Bishop in Residence of the Missouri Area of The United Methodist Church) came to teach on the Five Practices in our conference. Since we’re working our way through the Five Practices at Centre Grove, the event was partly review for me, but it was also good to hear Bishop Schnase … Read more