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By Mark Eldredge
January 19, 2018

If you have been reading these articles, you know that the American Anglican Council (AAC) is dedicated to helping bring revitalization to Anglican congregations. These articles are one small contribution to our resources designed to help you bring revitalization to your church. As you pray and make plans for 2018, I thought it would be helpful to tell you about another great resource we have developed. It's called the ReVive! Workshop.

As the dust began to settle after so many of us left The Episcopal Church, the AAC looked ahead and saw the coming need for church revitalization in the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA.) The concern was, and is, that even though we have roughly 1000 churches, if these churches don't figure out how to do the hard work of fulfilling the Great Commission in our day, many of our churches will close. That's just not acceptable to us. Therefore, we started developing and adapting short seminars that teach principles that, if applied, can bring new life and growth. Some of you may have participated in those earlier offerings from the AAC.

Committed to this need, the AAC created the position of Director of Church Revitalization and Coaching. When I became the second to hold this position last Summer, one of the first things I did was take a fresh look at the latest version of this workshop now called ReVive! Here's what I found and what I did:

Believing that a bigger church is not better, a smaller church is not better, but a healthier church is better, ReVive! emphasizes strategies that will bring church health and then growth to any size congregation. From my own experience in parish ministry, I knew that without a genuine love for Jesus in the congregation even great strategies would fail. That's why I added an important initial session dedicated to personal renewal. In addition, we added a session on leading the church through change which is crucial to the revitalization being more than just a good idea.

Seminar Syllabus:

Introduction -- Understanding the Church Life Cycle.

Session 1 -- REnewal of your heart, soul, and mind!

Session 2 -- Values and Vision!

Session 3 -- Insist on Church Health!

Session 4 -- VITAL Strategies!

Session 5 -- Enacting the Vision!

Though we're calling it a workshop, this resource is much more than that. Here's what is included in ReVive!:

Myself or one of our other workshop leaders coming to your church for the weekend. They meet with church leaders on Friday evening, present the workshop for the entire congregation on Saturday, and then stay through Sunday morning to observe. Following the weekend, you receive a written report with recommendations and six months of follow up coaching for your Sr. Clergy. We have learned that without the follow up coaching the congregation is far less likely to implement new strategies and experience revitalization. We will no longer provide the workshop without the follow up coaching.

Knowing that many of the churches most in need of revitalization may not be rolling in extra money, we have committed to keeping the cost as low as possible and, to make it payable over time. The entire ReVive! workshop (including coaching) is $1,750.00 plus expenses. We ask congregations for $500 down to secure a weekend on the calendar, then $500 at the time of the weekend, followed by $125/month for six months during the follow up coaching period. That is very doable, even for a small congregation. If you're thinking, "Yeah, right! That's not that doable for us...," call me and let's talk about it.

For more information, please contact me as soon as possible in order to get your weekend on the calendar in 2018. It's amazing how quickly calendars fill up! Now is the time to be making plans for Summer and Fall. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Let's see your church ReVive!

The Rev. Canon Mark Eldredge is Director of Church Revitalization and Coaching at the American Anglican Council. You can reach Canon Mark via email at MEldredge@AmericanAnglican.org. Find out more on our Revive! page.

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