Summer Sunday School Study
June 2016–Perhaps most of us already know that the mission of the Church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ – but what does that mean in a practical way? How do we go about doing it? How does this mission fit into our individual lives and into the life of the Christ-centered community known as Central Presbyterian Church?
These are the types of questions that will be explored during a six-week summer Sunday school class I am teaching on the book Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations by Robert Schnase. The class begins June 19 in the parlor and concludes July 31. (The class takes a break July 3 for Worship at the Park).
Schnase writes that the presence and strength of five practices demonstrate congregational health and vitality. Those practices are:
– Radical Hospitality.
– Passionate Worship.
– Intentional Faith Development.
– Risk-Taking Mission.
– Extravagant Generosity.
Schnase holds that these practices capture the main process by which God uses churches to make disciples of Jesus Christ. Churches fulfill their mission for the transformation of the world by repeating and improving on these practices. And people search for churches that are shaped by these qualities.
“These fundamental practices are so critical to a congregation’s mission that failure to perform them in an exemplary way results in congregational deterioration and decline,” Schnase writes. “The words used to express these qualities are irresistible because they move us from abstract intentions to practical and personal directions for ministry. Once our mission becomes practical and personal, it becomes memorable and achievable.”
Each week, my class will discuss one of these practices, based on the assigned reading – a chapter per week. On the final week, I plan for us to review what has been our best learning throughout the course. So that we can order books in time for everyone to have one at least a week before the class begins, please contact DCE Annette Goss by June 5 and let her know you want to be in the class. See you in Sunday school this summer!