Press Release: Church leaders gather for spring learning retreat

United Methodist Communications
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For Immediate Release
May 1, 2014

Church Leaders Gather for Spring Learning Retreat

Nashville, Tenn.: The residential bishops of The United Methodist Church and secretaries of the general agencies will gatherMay 4-8 at Epworth-by-the-Sea in St. Simons Island, Ga. for a time of spiritual reflection and peer learning and sharing.

Much of the learning experience will be centered on “adaptive leadership,” led by Marty Linsky, a professor at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government and co-founder of Cambridge Leadership Associates, a leadership consulting, training and coaching practice. Linsky co-authored The Practice of Adaptive Leadership: Tools and Tactics for Changing Your Organization and the World with Ronald A. Heifetz and Alexander Grashow.

“We believe we are in a time of adaptive change,” said Bishop Peter Weaver, executive secretary of the Council. “We’re not looking at just defined problems with clear-cut solutions, but rather how we might adapt to more effectively accomplish our mission in a global and changing environment.”

The Vital Congregations Leadership Team will lead the bishops in talking about congregational development and how to apply the adaptive leadership theory in ways that help reach the goal of increasing the number of vital congregations. The attendees will also travel from Epworth to see the principles of congregational vitality in action.

Dr. Christine Pohl, Associate Provost for Faculty Development at Asbury Theological Seminary, and author of Living into Community: Cultivating Practices That Sustain Us, will invite the participants into spiritual centering and living into community through daily Bible study and worship.

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