Several months ago, most of us (88 percent) participated in a survey about our spiritual lives - individually and collectively. The results of the survey are in. A team of 17 Holy Crossers spent several weeks meeting, prayerfully considering, and discussing: what does this mean for us? Simply put the results of the survey show we are doing well in most areas, and we can improve in others.
Renewal Works helps congregations focus on making spiritual growth a priority.
Renewal Works (“RW”) defines spiritual growth as " steps taken to deepen our relationship with God, with neighbor, with the world and with ourselves."
The RW process helps the parish make the goal of spiritual growth clear, and
make that goal an expectation for everyone in the congregation.
The progression of the relationship we have with God and our neighbor is described by RW as the ‘spiritual continuum’ or the ‘Spiritual Journey’. Further, RW identifies that parishioners can be at four different stages of their own Spiritual Journey, and may move forward or backwards among these stages:
1. Exploring life with God in Christ
Those taking the first small steps in an intentional spiritual journey
2. Growing a life with God in Christ
Those more committed to their Christian faith but having many
3. Deepening a life with God in Christ
Those whose faith lets them rely on God’s presence and power in
their daily lives
4. Centered in a life with God in Christ
Those who consider that their Christian faith is the most important relationship in their lives
Through the results of the survey, we ask, "Where have we been? Where are we now? "Where do we feel called to go? How will we get there?" We looked at opportunities for growth, as well as what brings us satisfaction. What do we do well?
In brief, we have a strong sense of grace. We value community service. We are satisfied with our church leadership and opportunities. We are energized by opportunities presented to us. We are good at loving and caring.
Areas for growth include learning more about who we are as Episcopalians, what our spiritual gifts and talents are, and learning more about the Bible.
When we provide opportunities for a deeper understanding of scripture, for understanding more about our Episcopal faith, for growing in and using our spiritual gifts and talents, we will then more fully love and serve Jesus while serving the needs of others.
This is an exciting time! We are thirsty for more! The committee compiled the survey results and brainstormed ways to implement methods and activities to be more rooted, more grounded, more secure in who we are individually and collectively as disciples of Christ. It's up to each of us to prayerfully consider the pathway. Your ideas and inspirations are welcome. There's so much more to learn! So much to do! We are on this spiritual journey together.
On behalf of the RW committee,