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November/December 2018


Have We Lost the Art of Conversation?

by Amy Schenkel
Recently the city of Grand Rapids started a free bus service that runs nearly from my front door straight to downtown.  Now all of my excuses for not using public transportation are gone (now it is convenient, consistent, and free!), so I have been making use of it as much as possible.  As I have ridden, I have tried to use it as an opportunity to notice the people around me and be open to conversation.

When I ride the bus in the mornings, my co-riders are typically wearing scrubs on their way to work a shift at Butterworth hospital.  At least, I make that educated guess based on what I observe; their earphones and smartphones create an invisible wall between us so that conversation is impossible.

I have found, however, that in the middle of the day, the riders tend to be more aware of the world around them.  It was on one of these rides that I met Stephanie, traveling from an Adult Learners Convention at the VanAndel Convention Center back to her apartment, which happens to be close to my house. Read More 

The resource section of this newsletter includes tools for leading your congregation in developing this art.

Resource Spotlight

The 9 Arts of Spiritual Conversations: Walking alongside People Who Believe Differently” by Mary Schaller. 

Southern Heights CRC is using this book to help their congregation get past the awkward moments that keep them from having meaningful conversations.
This 12-minute TEDx talk by author and radio host Celeste Headlee is entertaining and practical.  You could use it in an adult education class and practice the art of conversation together!

The Art of Children's Conversation

In our house, teaching our children to connect with others through conversation started at the dinner table.  We each share our “wows and pows” of the day and learn how to listen well to one another.  This card game gives you great conversation starters for kids- there is also an adult version available.

Other Ways to Support Regional Church Plants

West Michigan Friendship Center

Six months ago we began a partnership with the West Michigan Friendship Center. Please help us love our refugee and immigrant neighbors coming from Muslim countries by considering proving a meal on a Friday night.
Specific openings on the calendar are:

November 2, 9, December 7, 14, and 21 (Christmas party). 

Please let WMFC know (616) 828-5310 which, if any, of these dates, work for your group.
WMFC is also praying that they could give Christmas gifts to approximately 40 girls and boys at the center.

Hessed Community Church

Hesed ministry is a Resonate Global Mission emerging church/holistic mission network in Detroit, MI. Through the end of November, we will be collecting items from the list below.  If you would like to contribute, a box will be located at the CRCNA church offices for drop off by December 1.
The items they’ve requested are:
  •  Coats, jackets, hoodies, gloves, hats, scarves, socks, etc.·       
  •  Hygiene kits: Male/Female (Deodorant, socks, lotion, shampoo, soap, hand sanitizer, breath mints,  toothpaste/brush, lip balm)
  • Frozen meat: Chicken, burgers, hot dogs, sandwich meat (turkey/ham) *this may be hard to ‘collect’ and bring.  Gift cards for purchasing these items are also appropriate.
  • Tide pods (Laundry Detergent)

Resonate Partners with these Upcoming Events 

RAVAH (Hebrew: Fresh Water) is a place where church planters find refreshment, community, and encouragement

November 7, 2018

January 9, 2019

March 13, 2019

May 8, 2019

Arnies Restaurant at  815 Leonard St NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504 in the Upper Room


Save the Date for Tod Bolsinger

Leading in Uncharted Territory
Feb 15, 2019
Church of the Servant- Grand Rapids

Register Here

Leading change in the church can seem to be impossible. The status quo can be the enemy of mission. As leaders in the church, God calls us to follow his mission forward, and yet so often we feel ill-equipped. If you desire to explore how to best lead healthy change in ministry, we'd like to invite you to join us for a full-day conference led by leading change expert, and author of Canoeing the Mountains; Tod Bolsinger.
Copyright © 2018 Christian Reformed Church Resonate Global Mission, All rights reserved.

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