Disciples across the U.S. and Canada can join the Northern Lights Region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) on the second Saturday of each month for educational/spiritual growth opportunities. We will gather online from 10-2 (Pacific time, Zoom platform) for a time of learning and growing together. Each month will focus on one of three areas: congregational transformation, justice ministries, and spiritual growth.
Each gathering will follow roughly the same schedule: (all times Pacific)
- 10-11:30: Learning session 1
- 11:30-12:30: Lunch break (Zoom room will remain open for those who want to share the meal together)
- 12:30-2:00: Learning session 2
We are pleased to announce the first quarter schedule:
January 9: Adaptive Change for Congregations – Rev. Dr. Kara Markell
Description: The Church has been in a prolonged season of change for many years, facing the changing religious landscape of our region with moderate success, and expending internal energy on transformation processes that haven’t worked well. The Covid-19 pandemic has intensified the rate of change in our congregations and the sense of urgency within the congregation for useful, possibly significant, change.
In this workshop, you’ll learn the basics of Adaptive Change – what it is, how it works, basic definitions and trends, and how to recognize it in your congregation. You’ll also receive a list of additional resources for continued exploration of this topic. This workshop will not give you a formula to go and try in your congregation, because, as you’ll learn, adaptive change is highly contextual.
Rev. Dr. Kara Markell is pastor of Lake Washington Christian Church and chair of the Northern Lights Regional Commission on Ministry. She is also a retreat leader and has worked with pastors and lay leaders seeking to engage in the process of transformation and adaptive action in their congregation. She received her MDiv from Brite Divinity School and her DMin from Seattle University. Her doctoral work focused on the link between Ecclesiology/Congregational identity and a congregation’s ability to engage in adaptive change.
February 13: Winter Talk – Led by Jon Ghahate and Rev. Nathan Hill
Description: Winter Talk is a conversation on the Christian Doctrine of Discovery (DOD). Together we will spend time considering the DOD’s impact on Northern Light Disciples and our structure and theology.
Winter talk is a space of accountability to the Native American voice and how that voice is heard when exploring the past, understanding the present, and visioning the future.
Jon Ghahate (Laguna & Zuni Pueblo), the Museum Cultural Educator at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico, will lead us through an Indigenous understanding of the DOD. Born and raised on both the Laguna & Zuni Pueblos Jon is a parent, educator, and Vietnam Era Veteran. Jon’s work is to “give a voice of resilience and authenticity for those who have come before us and our future generations of Pueblo peoples.”
Alongside Jon is Nathan Hill who is pastor of University Christian Church of Hyattsville, Maryland. Nathan is originally from southwest Oklahoma, the son of a public educator and a nurse. Nathan is also a Core Anti-Racism trainer for the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Currently working on a Doctor of Ministry from Phillips Theological Seminary, Nathan will help us understand the DOD’s impact on our lives and the church.
March 13: The Practice of Gratitude: A Lenten Retreat – Rev. Laurie Rudel
“We give thanks to you, O Beloved, for You are kind;
your steadfast love endures forever!
— Psalm 118:1, from Psalms for Praying by Nan C. Merrill
“Let gratitude be the pillow upon which you kneel to say your nightly prayer.
And let faith be the bridge you build to overcome evil and welcome the good.”
— Maya Angelou
By March 2021 we will have lived in the midst of a pandemic for one year. Is it possible to sustain, or even recover, a sense of gratitude in such a time as this?
Over the course of this Lenten retreat we will explore the promise and practice of gratitude through poetry, prayer, conversation, and various forms of meditation.
Laurie Rudel is a retired pastor and artist who now serves as faculty for and on board of the Grünewald Guild, an online learning and retreat center dedicated to the practice of art, faith, and community near Leavenworth, WA. She also serves on the board of the University Christian Church Legacy Foundation. Before the pandemic she and her beloved wife, Barb, sang at the bedside of hospice patients with the Seattle Threshold Singers. They live in Lake Forest Park, WA under a canopy of tall fir trees.
Second quarter classes will be announced in February.
How to Register: Registration will be available at https://northernlightsdisciples.org/second-saturdays/.
A suggested donation of $10.00/person/session or $25/congregation/session with 3 or more participants registered at the same time.
Sessions will be recorded and made available after the event, free to those who registered and at a nominal cost for those who prefer to participate by watching the recording(s).
These sessions are open to all, clergy and lay, from within and beyond the Northern Lights Region.