A Thriving Practices cohort connects churches to explore a specific aspect of ministry together. It’s like a small group, but for churches!
These learning clusters have been found to be one of the most effective and encouraging ways to develop a particular area of church ministry. And they are a great followup to the Thriving Essentials course, allowing your congregation to take a next step alongside other churches who sense a similar calling. There’s no need to go it alone—let’s learn with, and from, each other.
Each Thriving Practices cohort consists of:
3-8 churches meeting monthly (usually 2-3 people from each church attend)
an expert facilitator to guide the learning journey
a small team within your congregation to apply what you learn to your context
one-on-one coaching to support your team
a commitment of one year, with option to extend
access to grants to offset expenses and help implement cohort-related projects
If your church feels called to grow in ministry and mission, this grant-funded initiative is a tremendous opportunity to breathe new life and new resources into that calling. Your church will gain access to expertise and support along the way, plus experience the joy of linking arms with other churches who are pursuing that same calling.
New cohorts start Fall 2022. See the list below, and submit the form to register your church's interest in one or more cohorts. Then we'll connect to provide more details and explore whether it's a good fit for for your congregation.
Spots are limited. Please submit the interest form as soon as possible.
Facilitated by Safe Church Ministry, Pastor Church Resources, and Office of Social Justice
Are you and your church ready to become part of a Restorative Congregation Cohort? This cohort will be all about learning and experimenting with circle processes to deepen relationships, create healthier church communities and build capacity to transform conflict into opportunity. One way the restorative framework has been used is through using listening circles to discuss the Human Sexuality Report through the Challenging Conversations Toolkit. Churches that decide to become part of a Restorative Congregation Cohort, will create a Restorative Reference Team of 3-5 individuals, who will receive training before participation in the cohort. Learn More
Hokmah is the Hebrew word for wisdom. The Hokmah Cohort will engage ideas from Susan Beaumont’s book How to Lead When You Don’t Know Where You Are Going: Leading in a Liminal Season. Participants will discern a wise path to being vibrant communities of Jesus in the world by engaging a Sabbatical mindset that sets time aside time to discern. We will engage the four areas of the Old Testament Sabbatical year - deepen trust in God, fresh starts for the least and the last, care for Creation, and reading through Scripture.
In the Bible, God often uses stories to tell us who he is. We are part of his story and it’s important for us to see our story in his story. In this cohort, we will learn how sharing stories:
Builds relationships between generations.
Helps us see how God is working in the faith of His people.
Creates our identity in Christ by knowing who we are and whose we are.
Provides guardrails on how to respond to life’s joys and sadness.
Becoming a faith storytelling congregation involves learning how to shape, share and receive the faith stories of our community. Gather a group of people from your congregation who love stories and join us.
At its heart, Go Local is a process of faith formation for mission. It helps us learn postures and practices that equip us to discover and join the Spirit on God’s mission in our neighbourhoods. In these cohorts, we will learn through action and reflection as we listen, discern and ‘experiment’ in our contexts. We will also grow together through practices such as ‘dwelling in the text’ together and learning to answer the question 'what is God saying and how might we respond.’
The purpose of the Church Renewal Lab virtual cohort is to ask and answer: Who are we? Where are we headed? How will we get there? The hoped for outcome is that churches become intentional missional congregations that make more and better disciples. Fall, Winter and Spring learning labs are scheduled over two ministry seasons to help congregations walk through a three-step process of listen, imagine, do. Five renewal tools are examined during the labs: vision, outreach, faith formation, church vitality and implementation. Each learning lab includes a Thursday and Friday training for pastors/key leaders and a Saturday gathering for congregational renewal teams.
We're eager to hear your ideas for future cohorts! If you'd like to connect with other churches to explore a particular topic, please let us know. As this project moves forward we'll be gathering your suggestions and connecting like-minded churches to form new cohorts. Please suggest a cohort topic by emailing us at: [email protected]