Focused Priorities for the Immediate Future

I have just returned from 3 days at Duke Divinity School as a part of the Episcopal Leadership Forum.  We are a group of 22 UM bishops who meet twice a year in a continuing education context. One of the exercises they put us through was to reflect on what our individual priorities will be for the next 18 months.  I found it to be welcome “balcony” time.  For me two priorities leap to the forefront.  Actually these are not new at all but continuations of ongoing work.  (In addition, I want to assert that by their very nature of these priorities are flexible and subject to significant revision and morphing.)  1)  To grow a learning organization that reaches a new generation for Christ.  At a minimum there are four specific strategies that encompass this priority.
  1. Developing Cluster groups as learning communities
  2. District Superintendents learning a new job focused in coaching
  3. Conference Staff and Centers becoming more tightly focused on energizing and equipping local congregations
  4. Establishing a culture of accountability throughout the Conference system
2)  Designing and implementing a leadership development system for both lay and clergy.
  1. Developing a new generation of leaders for congregations and the conference
  2. Helping train leaders for the new post-Christendom age
  3. Moving continuing education from being a job “perk” for clergy to a focused part of ministry development on a voluntary basis