Leadership Clinics

Leadership Clinics are day-long workshops that focus on topics related to leadership within the church. Leadership Clinics are always held the Monday of Pastors Week. While many Leadership Clinic participants also choose to attend Pastors Week, it is possible to register and attend one of these events without attending Pastors Week.

Early registration deadline January 7.

How Dare We Call Ourselves Anabaptist?

Monday, January 27, 2014 9:00a.m-3:00

Presenter: Maurice Martin

Since most of us are not in danger of dying for our faith, nor have we been re-baptized, how dare we call ourselves Anabaptist? In response to this question posed by Mennonite scholar Walter Klaassen, this clinic will trace the journey of Anabaptism from H.S. Bender to Stuart Murray, noticing the movement from emphasis on being Christian by choice to the emergence of terms such as "radical Reformation," "peace theology" and "community" to discovering and reclaiming the influence of medieval mysticism and monasticism, to Murray's assertion that cultural garb has gotten in the way of appropriating Anabaptist thought.  We will also consider how we can invite our congregations to join us on this Anabaptist journey in our post-Christian, post-modern contexts.

 

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Since most of us are not in danger of dying for our faith, nor have we been re-baptized, how dare we call ourselves Anabaptist? In response to this question posed by Mennonite scholar Walter Klaassen, this clinic will trace the journey of Anabaptism from H.S. Bender to Stuart Murray and consider how we can invite our congregations to join us on this Anabaptist journey in our post-Christian,post-modern contexts.

In the morning session we will explore the movement from Bender’s article “The Anabaptist Vision” with its emphasis on being Christian by choice, not by birth - a people apart from Christendom – which resonated with mainstream Mennonites in the 1950’s. Terms such as “radical Reformation,” “peace theology” and “community” captured the imagination of seminarians and others in the 1960’s  and beyond.  The tendency was to distinguish Anabaptism, with its ethical peace emphasis, from evangelical piety and fundamentalism. Later scholars challenged the narrowness of Bender’s description. Walter Klaassen and Paul M. Lederach had in the 1970’s noted that though Anabaptism was a distinct third way, it also remained rooted in both Catholicism and Protestantism. Arnold Snyder, a student of Klaassen, fleshed this out as he discovered the significant influence on Anabaptism of mediaeval mysticism as well as monasticism. He invited us to reclaim the notion of new birth or “the changed life” which was foundational to both Anabaptist spirituality and ethics.

Who then can be called Anabaptist today? I suggest perhaps we can use it more like an adjective, “Anabaptist-like” Christians. That is what evangelicals such as Brian McLaren and Stuart Murray did as they discovered and appropriated Anabaptist thought. But for Murray, the Mennonite cultural garb got in the way, hence he uses the book title The Naked Anabaptist.

Participants will be invited to share stories of their personal journey with Anabaptism. In the afternoon session we will explore how we can invite our congregations to join us on the journey, to cloak ourselves in Anabaptism as a way of being Christian in our post-Christian/ post-modern society.
In the morning session we will explore the movement from

About the presenter: Maurice Martin, DMin, is a graduate of Goshen Biblical Seminary in Elkhart, Ind., (MDiv 1974). In 2001 he completed a DMin at McMaster Divinity College, Hamilton, Ont..  He has written extensively for the church in Adult Bible Study curriculum and articles in Mennonite periodicals. He also published the book Identity and Faith: Youth in a Believers Church (HP Waterloo, 1980). He has taught Unit III Anabaptist History and Thought in the Pastoral Studies Distance Education program of AMBS. In addition he has taught Anabaptist theology to leaders of immigrant groups (Hmong, Korean, Chinese, Ethiopian, etc.) across Canada to help them become familiar with  the  core theological  beliefs of the Mennonite Church in which they have become member congregations.

 

Sex Offenders in My Church?

Monday, January 27, 9:00a.m.-3:00p.m.

Presenters: Jeanette Harder and Nancy Kauffmann

Whether we acknowledge it or not, people with sex offense histories are already attending our churches. How can we minister in the name of Christ to them, while also providing for the protection of children and youth? This clinic will offer guidance for churches dealing with persons who have committed sexual offenses while maintaining the congregation as a safe and healing community.

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Whether we acknowledge it or not, people with sex offense histories are already attending our churches. Some of them may show up on sex offender registries, but many more of them have not yet been reported. Still other individuals have difficulties with boundaries and behaviors. Any of these individuals can (and do) bring harm to children and other people in our churches. While it is tempting to reject these individuals, it is important to remember they are also loved by God, and may be seeking healing and forgiveness. How can our churches minister in the name of Christ to them, while also providing for the protection of children and youth? This clinic will offer guidance for churches seeking to include persons who have committed sexual offenses (or who have difficulties with boundaries and behaviors) while maintaining the church as a safe and healing community.

In this clinic, we will learn about the types and categories of sex offenders, and their characteristics and common behaviors. A biblical perspective will consider God’s deep concern for those who are vulnerable, as well as God’s offer of grace and new life to everyone, whether we have sinned or been sinned against. After a quick summary of treatment models and outcomes, we will grapple with the difficult questions of the church’s response: When and to whom should we report inappropriate behavior? What is the role of the pastor in ministering to both survivors and offenders? How do pastors respond to family members of both victims/survivors and offenders? What are available resources? We will discuss the needs and perspectives of offenders, victims, and their families. Finally, we will explore policies and practices for keeping children and youth safe in our churches in general, as well as in specific situations related to child sexual abuse. Come, let’s learn together.

About the presenters:

Jeanette Harder, PhD, CMSW, is a professor at the Grace Abbott School of Social Work at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She teaches graduate and undergraduate courses, primarily in research and program evaluation. She is the author of the book, Let the Children Come: Preparing Faith Communities to End Child Abuse and Neglect, published by Herald Press in 2010. She is also the co-founder and board president of Dove’s Nest, a nonprofit organization that seeks to “empower and equip faith communities to keep children and youth safe in their homes, churches, and communities.” Jeanette is married to Stan, and they have a 15-year-old son who came to them at birth through open adoption. Jeanette and her family are members of First Mennonite Church in Lincoln, Nebraska. She received her B.S. in Bible from Grace University in Omaha, and her Masters and PhD in Social Work from the University of Texas at Arlington.

Nancy Kauffmann, DMin, is a denominational minister with Mennonite Church USA. She relates to ten of the 21 Mennonite conferences and their leadership. She also oversees the pastoral calling system for the Mennonite Church which serves as a resource for persons seeking pastoral assignments, congregations and conferences. She serves on the Board for Dove’s Nest which is a nonprofit organization that seeks to “empower and equip faith communities to keep children and you safe in their homes, churches, and communities.” Nancy is married to Joel and they have two grown sons and one granddaughter. She is a member of College Mennonite Church in Goshen, Indiana. She received her BA in Elementary Education from Goshen College in Goshen Indiana, her Masters of Divinity at Associated Mennonite Biblical Seminaries now Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary in Elkhart Indiana and her Doctor of Ministry at Claremont School of Theology in Claremont California.

 

Gathering for New Pastors

Sunday evening, January 26, 6:00p.m. Dinner and first session Monday, January 27, 9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. second session  Thursday, January 30 12:45 p.m. Lunch and wrap up session

Presenters: Terry Shue and Karen Martens Zimmerly

Pastors in their first years of ministry face many questions:  Is this church and community a good fit for me? How do I best minister in this context? How do I navigate the unspoken and spoken expectations? Is pastoral ministry truly my calling? In this clinic pastors in their first three or four years of ministry will talk with each other and with leaders from Mennonite Church Canada and Mennonite Church USA about the challenges and gifts of early ministry.

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Terry Shue, MDiv, is director of leadership development for Mennonite Church USA following 23 years of pastoral experience serving in two congregations. Terry works to connect the efforts of our schools, conferences and congregational leaders to strengthen local congregations through calling out and training leader at all levels for the church. Terry lives in Ohio with his wife Kay.

Karen Martens Zimmerly is denominational minister for Mennonite Church Canada. She comes to her position with 21 years of pastoral ministry and area church involvements. Karen welcomes opportunities to preach, teach and engage in conversation about calling and equipping leaders, healthy pastor/ congregational relationships and becoming multicultural congregations in order to be Christ’s church in today’s world.

 

Registration

Registration is now closed.

Early registration deadline January 7.

Cost

  • $65 before early registration deadline
  • $55 each for three or more from one congregation before early registration deadline
  • $75 after early registration deadline
  • Additional student discounts are available on the online registration form

Meals

Lunch is available for an additional $6 for attendees who have pre-registered.

 

Continuing Education Units

Attending a clinic will earn 0.4 CEU

 

Refunds

Before the early registration deadline, cancellations will be refunded, less $25. After this date, cancellations will be granted credit, less $25, toward a future day-long workshop within one year. Refund credits must be requested within 24 hours of the event.

 

Contact us

Email the Church Leadership Center
or call:
574.296.6269 or 800.964.2627