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« You’re Invited to An Experience, North Coast of Ireland, Summer 2010 | Main

October 03, 2009



Ian, hope your trip is safe, fruitful, and blessed in everyway. Michael

John Haberlin


I think you might remember me as I contacted you and had you participate in a phone call about Congregational Transformation in the Presbyterian Church USA. It was a most profitable conversation and we are still working on getting things going (We're Presbyterians - do you expect speed?)

I was wondering (hoping/praying) that you might have time to help us out.

Here's what's up. I'm working with Presbyterians for Renewal (PCUSA) to totally redesign what used to be called: Congregational Renewal Weekends. Our goal is to construct an experience that could turn inward congregations outward. We are talking in terms of Congregational Transformation (buzz buzz words).

To try to hear how God might lead us I've created a blog (don't stop reading). It is by special invitation and will only go for 10 days - each day a new question to react to. (10 days being M-F starting tomorrow Feb 22 and M-F the next week. We have at present 18 committed to interacting.

I've so appreciated your insights and was hoping you'd be a special participant to challenge our myopia. Even if you could participate one day, that would be so helpful.

Below my name is what I've sent out to the bloggers.

Let me know - I'd need to send you a specific invite to get you into the blog.

God's special blessings to you.


You are important in the Kingdom of God and to a future ministry of Presbyterians For Renewal in the Presbyterian Church U.S.A.

May we pick your brains? Plummet your wisdom?
We’re serious – Someone has recommended you to us because they know you and respect your insights into Congregational Transformation.

PRESBYTERIANS FOR RENEWAL is developing a Congregational Transformation Experience and as we form it we are seeking the wisdom and insight of a few people like you.

What we are asking is your participation for 10 days in a blog focused on Congregational Transformation. There will be a different question each day to interact with (participation by invitation only). The responses will be collected into a resource to help shape a new type of experience for congregations desiring to be more effectively faithful to Christ.

For a Transformation Experience to be effective we anticipate the necessity to have three parts: 1) a serious preparation time, 2) a time for the congregation together to process and focus their understanding of God's call, and 3) a follow-up system for accountability and revision. Just what each of these segments would/could look like is still very much in the planning stage. That is why we treasure your input.

It would/could look something like this thought now the content and methods are still wide open:
1. An intensive Pre-Study Emersion Period
Conference calls, suggested studies, research, and activities and other resources will involve the entire congregation in preparation individually and in groups.
2. A Worship and Discernment Experience
Assisted by representatives of PFR onsite, the congregation will gather to share what they have seen and heard in the Pre-Study time and collectively and individually answer the question:
“As we lay ourselves open before God, how are we hearing God call us to respond?”
3. Follow-up and Evaluation
After the experience, PFR will periodically hold conference calls with the Congregation’s leaders to see how things are going and hold them accountable for faithfulness to God’s call to them.

We do not want to create another “program,” “seminar” or “pep rally.” We hope to create a replicable experience where congregations can discern God’s unique calling to them for the sake of the Kingdom responsibility God has given them.

What are we asking? Starting February 22, each Monday – Friday for the next 2 weeks, take some time to share your thoughts about the question of the day on a blog and interact with others on the blog from around the country.

If willing, please send an email response to: [email protected]
Of course, any questions or suggestions can be forwarded to that address as well.

We trust that you will feel this call of God to be a part of something that can touch the lives of many people in the years to come.

John Haberlin, blog administrator


Jacques René Sirois


Can not put the book down, realizing I am on a Pilgrimage myself I found this book to be so helpful. Heard that you moved to middle TN, is that true? I moved from VT to middle TN in search healing, recuperation and a new beginning.


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