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October 2014

Small Church Innovation Learning Initiative

October 15, 2014 - June 17, 2015

Rev. Sarai Rice (former Alban Consultant, Small Church Consultant and Executive Director of the Des Moines Area Religious Council) is leading a new course designed for churches with fewer than 75 in attendance. The course will help you understand your specific kind of "small church" organizational dynamics, develop the right leadership paradigm for your context, manage conflict, and build a big dream for your for your future. Each participating church is asked to bring their pastor and 2-3 lay leaders.

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ONLINE COURSE: Church Renewal 2.0

October 28 - December 2

Renewing a church requires a unique skill set in pastoral and lay leadership. In this course, Rev. Michael Piazza (CPR Executive Director for Church Renewal and the former senior pastor and Dean of the Cathedral of Hope in Dallas, TX - the Cathedral of Hope grew from 230 members to over 4,000 members during his tenure), currently Michael is the senior minister of Virginia-Highlands UCC in Atlanta a church experiencing renewal and new direction. Rev. Jim Latimer (Church Renewal Pastor and CPR Coach) will teach you the basics of turning your church around.

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January 2015

ONLINE COURSE – UCC History and Polity – Winter/Spring 2015

January 14, 2015 - April 21, 2015

This 12 week course examines the historical development and structural polity of the United Church of Christ. This course also spends time focusing on the emerging UCC and gives students a chance to explore social justice, world missions, ecumenism, and new and renewing congregational ministry within the UCC. Join instructor Rev. Dr. Timothy Downs (UCC Scholar and former UCC Pastor and UCC Conference Minister) for a course that will transform your denominational identity.

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ONLINE COURSE – Youth Ministry that Transforms your Whole Church – Winter/Spring 2015

January 14, 2015 - February 25, 2015

Many people have fond memories of Sunday evening youth groups, summer trips in old yellow school buses and lock-ins in the church basement; those models of youth ministry don’t often meet the needs of today’s busy teens and families who seek deeper engagement with God and their faith. Relationships are still the key to effective youth ministry. 30 years of research – and our common sense – tells us this. In this course, explore how to use this ‘old-school’ principle in new ways through cross-generational and family-based ministry, social media and engaged learning that helps whole families (not just teens) live their faith for a lifetime.

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Church Planting 1.0: Till the soil, discern & shape the vision

January 15, 2015 - March 25, 2015

Are you called to start a new progressive church? This course is a five-week online class led by of the country's leading experts in the field. Rev. Sara Wilcox, founding co-pastor of Land of the Sky UCC, will facilitate your journey of discernment and vision-casting with special guests Rev. Cameron Trimble (CEO of CPR) and Doug Pagitt (founding pastor of Solomon's Porch).

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February 2015

The Key to Faith Formation that Works – Bringing the Generations Together

February 2, 2015 - March 1, 2015

This four week course with the UCC Director of Faith Formation, Rev. Dr. Ivy Beckwith, will explore the value of intergenerational relationships for the healthy and lasting faith formation of children, youth, and adults. We’ll look at how these relationships help to build “sticky faith” and how to be intentional about creating them through learning, worship, and play.

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Church Renewal 1.0: How our church came back from the dead and yours can too

February 19, 2015 - March 25, 2015

Is it time to reverse the death spiral of your church?  Explore ways to become the healthy, stable, spirited and robust community you hope to be. We’ll cover the strategies Rev. Molly Baskette used in her church—their success is highly visible in the large percentage of children and young adults in the church, a sixfold increase in pledged giving in the last decade, and most importantly in the spirit of joy that pervades the community.  The hints, tips, and learnings can work…

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March 2015

The Enneagram: Grow your awareness & leadership – Spring 2015

March 17, 2015 - April 28, 2015

Deepening self-awareness is foundational to becoming an effective leader. Greater awareness allows us to understand our impact on others, maintain respectful boundaries, and increase the likelihood of responding to situations with patience and compassion.

The Enneagram reveals nine unique perspectives, ways we filter information and posits that each of the nine types has a central motivation, placement of attention and core avoidance. No type is better or worse than another type which allows staff to share more openly about blind spots, limiting patterns and internal stories without fear or shame. We’re in this together!

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