Workshops by New Englanders for New Englanders

Workshops: The Highlight of the GO Conference

Every New England Christian hears some great idea or the success of a strategy from somewhere in the country and immediately thinks, “That’s great, but will it work in New England?” You never have to ask that about a GO Conference workshop since they are led by folks working in a New England context. The GO Conference workshops are truly the highlight of our gathering.  Since they are led by New England leaders, you can be sure that you will be learning how to apply the philosophy and principles of our plenary sessions to your New England context. Not only will you learn, but you will connect with other New England practitioners who understand our unique landscape. You will leave each session with practical, New England-tested methods to do justice, love mercy, walk humbly and make disciples. 

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DO JUSTICE WORKSHOPS

Fighting injustice is central to making new disciples of deeply skeptical New Englanders who often see the Christian faith as only interested in filling buildings and supporting their programs. Led by New Englanders doing amazing justice work, these workshops will equip you to stand with the oppressed and fight injustice here in New England in practical ways.

Everyday Justice: Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is happening in the cities, suburbs and rural areas of every New England state. Communities are wrestling with how to respond, and the church is uniquely equipped to be part of the answer. Explore how you and your church can understand human trafficking in the New England context, and take strategic roles in caring for survivors and addressing aspects of the problem in ways that enhance our witness in the community.

Presenters

Bob Atherton, Sarah Durfey-Dunham, Bonnie Gatchell, Tricia Grant

Friday Morning

Everyday Justice: Racial Unity in the Body of Christ

As recent events have brought issues of racial inequality to the national fore and increased racial tension, many Christians have asked how the Church can play a more active role in fostering reconciliation and collaboration. This workshop provides a biblical framework for engaging in issues of race and explores how people can begin the journey of working towards healthy communities. This session offers a question and answer time with a multiracial team as well as a resource list for learning and action.

Presenters

Megan Lietz, Rebekah Johnson

Friday Afternoon

Everyday Justice: Doing Justice in the Workplace

This panel would cover two core aspects of doing justice at work: (1) justice for working Christians in terms of their legal rights in the workplace, and (2) justice for others in the workplace in terms of Christ-followers honoring their rights, too. We will also address how to do justice by helping those coming out of prison, rehab, homelessness etc. to become gainfully employed, and how to overcome bias and discrimination in the workplace.

Presenters

Drew Crandall, Scott Larson, Howard Wood, Pete Hanson

Saturday Morning

Everyday Justice: Racial Healing

How can you participate in racial healing in your community? This workshop will continue the conversation started from our plenary session challenging us as Christians to understand how we can be empowered by the Spirit to understand and participate in healing the wounds of racism and slavery in our communities.

Presenters

Ellen Bass, Jo Saxton, Sarah Shin, Tom Van Antwerp, Sheila Wise Rowe

Saturday Morning

Everyday Justice: Women in Ministry

How are churches in New England championing women in ministry? What are the challenges to taking a fresh look at the Biblical passages regarding women’s leadership? Is it possible to have true team ministry without the involvement of women? Our panel will discuss the challenges and the journey that New England churches are navigating as they seek to honour the full humanity of women.

Presenters

Vicky Kowarick, Sarah Bessey, Bryan Wilkerson, Lorraine Thornhill

Friday Morning

LOVE MERCY WORKSHOPS

Sharing the Gospel in New England means creating space on our sofas and in our sanctuaries for the broken, unredeemed outcast Jesus loves. Our Love Mercy workshops are for those wanting to explore ways in which individuals, churches, and businesses here in New England are creating radically merciful and welcoming environments for sinners and tax collectors to meet Jesus.

Mercy Giving: Guiding Pastors when LGBT+ Teens Come Out

Whether your church is conservative or progressive, it is important to understand that many LGBT+ youth and young adults commonly experience name-calling, teasing, bullying, exclusion, and judgment. Some encounter family rejection at home. From the frontlines, one disowned, homeless gay teen reports: “The church is the last place I would ever feel safe.” In this session, you will learn how to increase family acceptance and enhance church inclusion for LGBT+ young people. Inclusion is a prerequisite for growing faith identity in Jesus Christ.

Presenters

Bill Henson

Friday Morning

Mercy Giving: Responding with Justice Following the Pulse Terror Attack

After decades of systemic mistreatment, the LGBT+ Community was terrorized once again on June 12, 2016. The massacre left 49 dead and 53 wounded. Bill Henson has visited the Pulse Memorial Site over 10 times since the attack. It is by going that we learn what we can do. Join Bill to learn how your church can express justice and compassion for Orlando’s Gay Community. This will prepare you to express care for LGBT+ people in your local community.

Presenters

Bill Henson

Friday Afternoon

Mercy Giving: Urban Ministry

Urban ministry, like ministry in every environment, is challenging. Join Jeff Bass from the Emmanuel Gospel Center in Boston, MA, as he shares about the challenges, and opportunities, of the Gospel in New England cities. Jeff will be joined by a panel of leaders doing ministry in the urban context. They will answer questions and share from their own experiences.

Presenters

Jeff Bass, Ricky Bolden, David Wright, Russell Jarvis, Liza Cagua-Koo

Friday Morning

Mercy Giving: Full-Life Generosity

What is the ultimate destination? A “full life of generosity” that encourages us all to live selflessly, redemptively and sacrificially. During this session, you will learn about a discipleship and group model that will increase the generous formation and intentionality of our personal, and your church’s growing generosity story.

Presenters

Gordon MacDonald, Mark MacDonald

Saturday Morning

Mercy Giving: Loving the Addicted and Broken in our Midst

The opiate crisis continues to plague our communities. How can a church respond with mercy and grace? This workshop will explore the realities of the opiate crisis and some ways New England churches are reaching families affected by drug and alcohol addiction.

Presenters

Michael Tso

Friday Morning

Mercy Giving: Foster Care

The church responds enthusiastically to the needs of vulnerable children across the globe, but are we aware of the need that’s in our own backyard? 24,000 New England children need homes, and we’ll look at how the church has the capacity, design and calling to not only meet the need, but impact children’s lives for eternity. We’ll explore a range of actions you can take, from opening your home to a foster child, to providing specific supports for foster families at all stages of the process.

Presenters

Bob Atherton, Marie Briggs, Wendy Jacobi, Jonathan Reid, Patty Morrow

Friday Afternoon

Mercy Giving: Homelessness

How can we effectively minister to the homeless in our communities? Do you understand the living system of homelessness and how, as an individual and local church, you can step in to disrupt the cycle? You will leave this workshop understanding the factors leading to homelessness and practical ways to bring hope and mercy to those in your community struggling with permanent housing.

Presenters

Claire Sullivan, Richie Gonzalez

Friday Afternoon

Mercy Giving: Transformative Suffering

Can God use our personal or family suffering to fuel compassion for others and passion for Christ? Although it is painful to think about it, the biblical answer seems to be yes. We’ll explore biblical, historical and personal examples of how God can deepen our love for Him and enlarge our care for others through life circumstances that are impossible for us to change and which God seems to allow.

Presenters

Paul Borthwick

Saturday Morning

Mercy Giving: Pornography – When Temptation Becomes a Stronghold

Pornography is no longer a “temptation” to the men, women, young adults and children in the 2017 church. It did not creep into the church as one might think; it came in like a tidal wave. But it was marginalized and has now become a “stronghold” that destroys. How do we confront porn use and subsequent addiction with great grace? We will discuss an avenue of hope to escape this stronghold with God’s mercy and love versus shame and condemnation.

Presenters

Rick Kardos, Kyle Keldsen, Dale Kuehne, Cheryl Laurenza

Saturday Morning

WALK HUMBLY WORKSHOPS

Humility allows us to enter into the world of the broken and lost. We are able to give grace only when we daily walk humbly in the grace of God. Our Walk Humbly workshops focus on equipping you with soul care strategies to humbly walk close to Jesus so you can effectively share the truth of Jesus from a place of spiritual health and vulnerability.

Living Humbly: Creating a Culture of Prayer in your Church

Do you long to see a greater commitment to prayer in your church? Join this panel discussion to learn and share ways of creating a culture of prayer that is specific for New England.

Presenters

Jonathan Friz and AJ Picard

Friday Afternoon

Living Humbly: Dwell Deep in Personal Soul Care

If your soul is weary and dry and you know all the things you should be doing about it, but are too crazy busy to actually do anything, then drag your bones to our room full of grace and learn how to dwell deep in God’s presence. After exploring the problem, the priority and the promise, you may just leave with a restored soul and a plan for daily spiritual disciplines. “Learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” Matthew 11.29

Presenters

Lucinda McDowell

Friday Morning

Living Humbly: Showing Kindness when we Disagree

How can we disagree without being disagreeable? Whether discussing politics, ethics or religion, this workshop will explore what it looks like to disagree with kindness.

Presenters

Sarah Bessey

Friday Afternoon

Living Humbly: Uniting Christians in a New Reformation

The first Reformation restored the Gospel of grace on the foundation of God’s Word, but a New Reformation is needed to unite (Catholics and other) Christians in the essentials of the faith and our common mission. What does this look like in fellowship, mission, theology, and structure? How can “three streams Christianity” bring together the fullness of faith? What does this look like in everyday life in New England?

Presenters

Dick Kiernan, Jonathan Friz, Dennis Gill, Scott Brill

Friday Morning

MAKE DISCIPLES WORKSHOPS

All of us are called as individuals to be a witness of God’s grace and mercy to those around us. Our churches also ought to be effective witnessing communities to their cities. The Make Disciples workshops equip you with New England-tested strategies to be effective in building relationships, sharing Jesus, inviting people to follow Him and seeing new commitments to Jesus here in a New England.

Whole Life Disciple-Making: Conversations on Common Ground: Rediscovering Your Story of Faith

We all have a story to tell that expresses our journey of faith and the inner fire that keeps us walking down its often difficult path. Our stories of encountering the living God along this road are embodiments of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in our individual lives. We each have a story of how the Good News changed – and is continuing to change our lives. We each have a story of encountering Jesus. The question is, do we believe that, by simply sharing our story, it can change the lives of those who hear it?

Presenters

Bishop Bill Murdoch

Friday Afternoon

Whole Life Disciple-Making: Empowering Believers for ‘Frontline’ Ministry

Too many believers think ‘real ministry’ only occurs if they are participating in a church program. They wonder, ‘Does God have a purpose for my everyday life?’ The reality is that every Christian has a ministry and a mission, everywhere and every day, on their frontline – workplaces, schools, neighborhoods – wherever! This workshop will give you an introduction to a framework for helping Christians think about how they can serve God no matter where He has placed them throughout the week. Join Neil Hudson from the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity and Chris Lake from the Vere Institute in Boston as they lead a discussion about empowering Christians to have a fruitful ministry right where they are.

Presenters

Chris Lake, Neil Hudson

Friday Morning

Whole Life Disciple-Making: Leading Church Culture Change

If churches are going to live up to their calling to be whole-life disciple-making communities, it’s going to take more than one person to make that happen—it’s going to take a team of leaders. The good news is that moving towards the vision of becoming a whole-life disciple-making church is a ‘win-win-win’ for pastors, lay leaders, and congregations. Join pastor Neil Hudson from the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity, and lay leader Chris Lake from the Vere Institute in Boston, for a discussion about ways pastors and lay leaders can work together to help their congregations become the disciple-making communities they are called to be.

Presenters

Chris Lake, Neil Hudson

Friday Afternoon

Whole Life Disciple-Making: Sustaining the Vision for the Long Haul

While running a special series or offering a new program can be a catalyst for change, seasoned pastors and lay leaders know that it will take more than one or two offerings to create a sustainable whole-life disciple-making church. Join Neil Hudson from the London Institute for Contemporary Christianity, and Chris Lake from the Vere Institute in Boston, as they lead a very practical discussion about ways that church leaders can ensure their congregations can maintain their focus on living fruitful, missional lives for Christ over the long haul.

Presenters

Chris Lake, Neil Hudson

Saturday Morning

Whole Life Disciple-making: Your Family

The first responsibility for parents in disciple-making is the home. From the single parent perspective of Ruth Graham to the viewpoint of Hannah MacDonald, a high school student, this panel discussion will include a variety of perspectives and experiences regarding disciple making activities in the home.

Presenters

Mark Orr, Ruth Graham, Virginia Ward, Sam Acevedo, Hanna MacDonald, Shaina Morrow

Saturday Morning

Whole Life Disciple-Making: Making Disciples in the Workplace

This panel will cover two core aspects of making disciples at work: (1) sharing the Good News and leading souls to the New Birth, and (2) helping Christ-followers to mature. We will touch upon making disciples across the spectrum of job functions, from front line employees to the executive suite. We will also address the local church’s role in making disciples in the workplace.

Presenters

Drew Crandall, Ernie Truax, Larry Ward, April Williams, David Zeile

Friday Morning

Whole Life Disciple-Making: Making Connections

When Jesus began his ministry, one of the first things he did was to gather his First Twelve – the core of what would be become a world changing movement. Clearly, part of making more and better disciples is building the core team, and then empowering the team to continue to meet and engage new people. Whether you are just starting out in a new church plant and looking to gather those First Twelve, or you are leading a well established ministry, you will walk away from this workshop with practical methods that will help you and your leaders make meaningful connections in your context, leading to greater health and vitality in ministry.

Presenter

Rick McKinley

Saturday Morning

Whole Life Disciple-Making: Pray for One

Pray for One is a unified prayer that unleashes an exponential movement of God’s love. Praying God’s expressed will into your life will bring transformation to you and to every One that encounters God through you. See how a simple prayer can position individuals, families, and churches to impact eternity by effectively sharing God’s love One person at a time.

Presenter

Bo Chancey

Saturday Morning

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February 17-18, 2017

DCU Center  |  Worcester, MA