GA 2009 - Growth Day - Summary of Outcomes
- Nearly 300 people participated in the day.
- 4 people spoke about their Growth & Renewal experiences during the last year.
- Jim Corrigall reflected on the 12 ‘Top Tips’ for growth gathered during his visits to congregations.
- Rev Jane Dwinell led a lively session relating her experiences of Growth to our Unitarian communities. Jane led into the District Group and personal statement sessions which followed.
- District groupings discussed how they could act together on some of the ideas presented. Actions resources needed were identified.
- Rev Don Phillips presented the future ministry summary report.
- Almost 200 people completed their own response to the questions ‘What’s that badge? A Flaming what?’ otherwise known as the ‘lift pitch’ or ‘lift line.’
- A number of people also made comments and suggestions for the Executive Committee to review.
- Closing Worship was led by Mel Prideaux with Ant Howe.
Summary of afternoon session
- Get a mandate — agree if want to grow and how much - Congregational growth day
- Positive attitude to being small
- Audit of newcomers, review newsletter - Remember newcomers in everything we do
- Deliver pastoral care using lay resources
- Establish a District Facilitator (may be shared between districts)
- Visit each other to learn & share good practice
- New leaflets & visible noticeboards - Post cards of local chapel - Quote own and national websites on all publicity
- Dedicated welcomers for visitors:
- Create feeling of warmth
- Neat tidy church
- get rid of clutter
- Change church posters regularly - Publicity in community - Week day sessions (open church)
- Have taster sessions, Parent & Toddler groups, Pass on skills to other members, Pavement café
- Explanation of order of service - Use of music as variety in services
- Social action versus social club
- Consider all as ‘work in progress’ and rejoice in the small steps along the way
- Keep it simple
Angela Maher, reporting in GAZette, quoted her favourite ‘lift lines’ from those shared during the session:
- “We’re the sort of people who set chalices on fire rather than drink from them.”
- “We believe in one god. We don’t care if you spell that with one, or two ‘O’s”
These are just a few of the outcomes. A full list, together with identified resources needed, will be put on the GA website, together with the personal statements
To read an introduction to the Growth and Renewal project please click here.