Communal Discernment

In what ways do the practices of decision-making in your community of faith contribute to - or detract from - your mission focus, creativity (risk-taking), and unity?

What are key characteristics and skills of leaders seeking to facilitate communal listening? (Compare and contrast these skills with the skills of coaching.) 


Our presenter this week was Myron Herzberg of Grinnell, Iowa. He has served as pastor of three ELCA congregations, as assistant to the bishop of the SE Iowa Synod, and as worship & music minister of the Grace Institute for Spiritual Formation. Myron recently led the clergy of the Episcopal Diocese of Iowa in a three-day sabbath retreat. In "retirement" he finds joy in introducing Christian contemplative practices to individuals and congregations and participating in classes at Grinnell College.

Our congregations, our communities, and our institutions are having trouble making fruitful decisions. Bound by old patterns, paralyzed in binaries, and lacking space for creativity, we are a people who are aching for reconciliation, shared purpose, and a way forward together. The people of The Way have a model of communal discernment to share with world. This presentation introduced the components of a contemplative decision-making process for congregation councils, congregational meetings, and gatherings for mission direction. Come, Holy Spirit!

We invite you to bring a spirit of curiosity to these gatherings and to all aspects of your life. What are you noticing? Where is Spirit moving? How are you being invited to participate?