Welcome to the Cookeville District!
Latest from the District Superintendent:
Dear Friends of the Cookeville District,
Greetings to you in the blessed name of Jesus the Christ!
For the past year, a group of leaders within our District has been meeting to consider the nature and task of ministry on the District level. In the process of prayer, fasting, and deep conversation, we discerned that the task of District ministry is rooted in our Conference’s adopted mission:
“The mission of the Tennessee Conference is to Discover, Equip, Connect, and Send lay and clergy leaders who shape congregations that offer Jesus Christ to a hurting world, one neighborhood at a time.”
As the District Strategy Team, we believe that our purpose is “building capacity for faithful and fruitful ministry”. In pursuit of this, we will be performing several “experiments” to test what strategies are most helpful. Following is a summary listing of four such strategies. More information about each will be shared in coming newsletters, but I wanted you to begin sharing these with you with the hope that you will include them in your prayers.
Ministry Academy: 10 Congregations will send their pastor and three key leaders to explore and develop ministry strategies around Spiritual Leadership, Discipleship, Evangelism & Community Engagement, and Worship. The event will span nine months and include four Friday-Saturday retreats. The first group of congregations will begin in September. A second academy will begin in the Fall of 2016.
Clergy Coaching: the first group of 10 clergy will participate in group and individual coaching with Rev. Chris Holmes to grow their capacity for spiritual leadership. The first group has just started.
Continuous Learning Communities: Beginning in 2016, opportunities for laity and clergy to explore aspects of ministry that affect fruitfulness. These will be hosted in the same geographic regions as our upcoming Charge Conferences. I have been pleased to witness the deep eagerness of our laity to learn and implement ministry strategies for increased fruitfulness.
Clergy Health Initiative: Clergy health has a direct correlation to congregational health. We are developing a program to assist clergy toward greater health. This will begin in 2016.
Our goal is not growing churches but growing congregational fruitfulness. We all share a commitment to the mission of the United Methodist Church “to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world”. Inherent in this common missional commitment is the understanding that new people encounter Jesus and grow in their relationship with Him through the care and support of the local church. Therefore, our task is to grow healthier and more fruitful congregations. The above strategies are a step toward this. Please hold these ministries in your prayers.
Rev. Max Mayo