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Faith Formation Conference Explores God’s Vision for Congregations

Exploring how churches can be stronger places of discipleship and faith formation for all ages was the topic of a recent faith formation workshop held in Ancaster, Ontario.

Despite being a weekday afternoon event, more than 100 people from 26 congregations in southern Ontario packed the hall at Meadowlands Fellowship Christian Reformed Church on May 6.

The event, with times of teaching, prayer, and team activities that looked at individual church’s areas of fruitfulness and weakness, was well-received by those who attended. Kristin Klein of Maranatha CRC in Woodstock said that despite a “wide variety of backgrounds, it’s amazing how we were all on the same page and had a starting point.”

Rev. Everett VanderHorst of Meadowlands Fellowship appreciated that the workshop allowed people from the same church to work together and begin the conversations that would continue in their church.

The workshop was a “good chance for our church members to reflect on what God’s vision is for our church,” said Debbie Wouda of Calvary CRC in Flamborough, “a chance to look for the opportunities God has set before us and not be wrapped up in what we feel is important.”

Rev. Sid Couperus of Mountainview CRC in Grimbsy enjoyed the workshop’s format. “[It] modeled a wonderful, refreshing way for us to bring this back to our congregation,” he said.

The workshop is one of several being organized across the denomination as part of the Next Steps faith formation initiative of the CRC, with “the desire that every local congregation knows they are supported by the head office,” said Syd Hielema, who helped lead the workshop.

Hielema said that weekday workshops are well attended as church staff is usually available. He expects more events will be planned during the week to avoid the weekend fatigue that many experience from being overscheduled.

About the Author

Krista Dam-Vandekuyt is a freelance news correspondent for The Banner. She lives in Jerseyville, Ontario.

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