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Healthy Congregations June 11, 2016

By April 21, 2016No Comments

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June 11, 2016 Saturday 8:00a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Edwards Congregational UCC 3420 Jersey Ridge Rd Davenport, IA 52807 Rev. Dr. Christine Isham, Senior Pastor
Sponsored by Edwards Congregational UCC
Led by Bill Blank, Associate Director Lombard Mennonite Peace Center

About the Workshop:

The Healthy Congregations workshop uses the insights of family systems theory to help church leaders and all members become more effective stewards of their congregation’s health.  The workshop was developed by Dr. Peter Steinke and is based on the work of Dr. Edwin Friedman, author of Generation to Generation: Family Process in Church and Synagogue.
Since the publication of Generation to Generation, many pastors have come to recognize the importance of understanding family systems theory as it relates to congregations.  The Healthy Congregations workshop helps both leaders and all church members expand their insight into how churches function as emotional systems.
Friedman noted that in many congregations today negative, reactive forces are allowed to set the agenda for the church.  What can be done to prevent anxiety from becoming a toxic force in your congregation? The Healthy Congregations workshop is designed to equip leaders to respond to the presence or potential threat of anxiety in a congregational system in ways that prevent destructive conflict and help the church stay focused on its unique mission and purpose.

This workshop will help you . . .

  • Learn how you as a leader can influence the health of your congregation – how to detect and avoid unhealthy patterns of living together in community.
  • Learn how to keep anxiety from becoming infectious.
  • Gain confidence in responding to challenges and opportunities.
  • Learn how to put limits on invasive behavior, manage reactivity, and overcome sabotage.
  • Discover how leaders can function as the congregation’s immune system.
  • Learn to focus on strengths, resources, options, and the future.

Who Will Benefit:

The workshop is designed for:

  • Pastors and other church staff, lay leaders, all congregation members.
  • Anyone interested in enhancing their capacity to manage self in a non-anxious and responsible way, whether in the church, the home, the workplace, or the community.

Workshop Leader:

Bill Blank is Associate Director of Lombard Mennonite Peace Center (LMPC) in Lombard, IL.  He is an ordained minister in the Mennonite Church and has served as a pastor and interim pastor.  He has participated in the Postgraduate Program in Bowen Family Systems Theory and Its Applications at the Bowen Center for the Study of the Family in Washington D.C.  He has experience as a mediator, trainer and church consultant as well as providing coaching for pastors and church leaders.


The registration fee (includes manual, lunch and refreshments) is $95 per person. Early bird registration prior to May 15, 2016, is $80.
Couples Discount: If you are attending with a spouse or partner and wish to share a manual, the cost for the second person is $70. Cancellations: Full refunds before May 30; After May 30 $25 fee per person

Workshop Schedule:

Saturday,  June 11, 2016
8:00-8:30 Registration
8:30-10:15  What is Systems Thinking?  Video Case Study: “The Anxious Congregation / The Responsible Congregation
10:15-10:30  Break
10:30-12:15  Healthy Congregations Respond to Anxiety  Healthy Invite Differentiation of Self
12:15-1:15  Lunch (served on-site)
11:50-3:00    Healthy Congregations Focus on Strength  Healthy Congregations Manage Conflict
2:30-2:45    Break
2:45-4:30    In Healthy Congregations, Leaders Challenge People In Healthy Congregations, Leaders Focus on Mission In Healthy Congregations, Leaders Promote Health Through Their Presence and Functioning  Planning For a Healthier Congregation

Workshop Location:

Edwards Congregational UCC

3420 Jersey Ridge Rd.

Davenport, IA 52807 ~ 563-359-0331