Church Visioning Retreat: By Nancy Hartmann, Council Chair
On Saturday, October 6th, our church held the first of four visioning retreats. In the morning the Church Council met at Joanna and Bob Sanferrare’s house for discussion. It was an inspirational venue to sit and look out over the river. We started the morning doing some “group dreaming” for our church, followed by small breakout groups on Passionate Worship, Risk Taking Mission, Radical Hospitality, and Extravagant Generosity.
Our dialogue was meaningful and filled with passion and many wonderful ideas. We joined other participants for lunch at the church then divided ourselves into groups to discover Merrimac! Each group went to a different part of Merrimac to take the time to observe. Our goal was to take the time to really notice our community and be in prayer for the neighborhoods and people we observed. When we all came back to the church we shared our findings. Many of us saw things we had never noticed before. Then we broke into three groups and identified our surrounding community demographics, what were the most serious current issues and needs within our immediate community, and what organizations or resources are already helping to meet real needs within our community.
It was a great day and for those of us that participated we came away with a greater understanding of our community and how our church could have an impact. It was a fun day sharing together. We will share more of our findings from our retreat at the church Charge conference. If you didn’t attend the retreat we hope you will join us at the next one in January. View more photos at the following link: