This project focuses on cultivating congregational thriving by helping congregations broaden their perspectives, relationships, and experiences so that they can more clearly contextualize, discern, and embrace God’s call to ministry and mission. This approach allows the Macedonian Ministry Foundation to leverage their long-term success by directing more of their learning, resources, and network of relationships decidedly toward sustained congregational thriving. The project includes three pilot programs: one serves as the base model, and two others are complementary in order to maximize the foundation's learning. The base model includes approximately 12 congregational cohorts of pastors and lay leaders, who acquire greater clarity of mission and practice for their own context by engaging deeply in other ministry contexts, perspectives, and experiences. The second model has pastors and lay leaders from three congregations in the same community engage with diverse cultural contexts in their own community to deepen reflection on values and broaden local mission, which may also include shared, collaborative efforts. The third model includes pastors and lay leaders from about six congregations in the same community, who engage with a diversity of cultural contexts in their local community in order to reexamine and reshape values and practices specifically related to the ministry of the word. In all, this program involves approximately 21 congregations and 170 participants -- including both pastors and lay leaders -- from a diversity of communities across the United States.
Bridgework: Building Collaborative, Adaptive, Joyful Congregations