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Shepherding Team introduces top Conference goals

Posted: May 13 2019 at 04:39 PM
Author: Anne Marie Gerhardt


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After months of deep dive conversations, assessments, studies, analyses, strategic planning, and visioning, the Northern Illinois Conference Shepherding Team’s (ACST) work has culminated in legislation with a recommendation of three top goals for the Conference.

Years before the recent Special Session of General Conference, the NIC began a process that has led to strategic planning, which is more important now than ever.

The primary three goals for a five-year strategic plan narrowed down from more than 30 are:

Goal 1: To Grow and Reach New Disciples of Jesus Christ

  • By encouraging individuals in the life-long practice of developing and strengthening a personal relationship with God;
  • By supporting congregations in fostering discipleship in all of their ministries; and
  •  By sharing the Good News with people who do not know Jesus.


Goal 2: To Live Out the Conviction that Racism is Incompatible with Christian Teaching

  • By encouraging individuals to engage in ongoing self-reflection, cross-cultural sharing, and growth;
  • By challenging the structures, practices, and policies of the NIC and instituting necessary changes to ensure equity; and
  • By educating and equipping congregations, districts and the NIC to be prophetic leaders pursuing equity in society.


Goal 3: To increase the Number of Highly Vital Congregations

  • By actively and intentionally practicing stewardship of the NIC’s ministry resources;
  • By conducting a comprehensive assessment of ministry resources and the future potential of every congregation; and
  • By creating and executing a plan with each congregation, in collaboration with the district, for its future.
     

By focusing on discipleship, we will strengthen our faith as individuals, and we will nurture and grow our faith communities in love of God and love for our neighbor. By pursuing anti-racism, we will build upon our history of diversity and inclusion, hold ourselves to a higher standard of equity and challenge ourselves to prophetic witness in our communities. By exercising stewardship over our ministry resources, we will position ourselves to move forward into a new expression of United Methodism.

The pursuit of these goals will be challenging and will require discipline, self-evaluation and self-sacrifice, mutual support and strengthened connection. This pursuit will be transformational for individuals, congregations and our Annual Conference.

The legislation will be voted on by the Annual Conference in June and the work to implement the goals will begin immediately. Visit www.umcnic.org/AC2019 and click on the "Legislation" tab to read the summary and rationale.

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