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Parish Leaders


As we seek to make disciples, multiply parishes, and plant churches throughout the city of Houston, leadership development is essential. This page is meant to be a resource to Sojourn's Parish Leaders. 

What you'll find:

+  Sojourn's process for parish multiplication and apprentice development.

+  Parish leader training videos and discussion questions.

+  Other valuable resources (position papers, curricula, bylaws, etc.)

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Parish Leaders


As we seek to make disciples, multiply parishes, and plant churches throughout the city of Houston, leadership development is essential. This page is meant to be a resource to Sojourn's Parish Leaders. 

What you'll find:

+  Sojourn's process for parish multiplication and apprentice development.

+  Parish leader training videos and discussion questions.

+  Other valuable resources (position papers, curricula, bylaws, etc.)

 

The Parish Leader Pipeline

Neighborhood Parish apprentices are individuals/couples who have self-nominated and/or been identified as prospective Parish Leaders. We welcome and encourage current Parish Leaders to identify, interview, and recommend any parish member who could foreseeably multiply within the next 2 years. We want for the process below to facilitate their growth as leaders and children of God.

Sojourn's process for assessing an apprentice is outlined below. This process includes written essay questions, a series of interviews, and a 6-week training course. We want for this pipeline to facilitate (1) personal and theological reflection, (2) meaningful feedback within the context of relationship, and (3) group-based learning. In order to structure multiplication into Sojourn's calendar, capitalize on peak seasons for visitors, and provide a quality 6-week training course, we multiply parishes 2-3 times per year. We call these "seasons of multiplication." 

 

Seasons of Multiplication

Whenever a new parish is multiplied, the multiplying core team will undergo a 4-week incubation process prior to opening their doors to the public. [This revised, 4-week parish primer is currently under construction.] New parish incubations will begin every January, April, and August, which means that new parishes will open their doors every February, May, and September.

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In order to multiply in January 2017, Steps 1-3 (below) must be completed by:

September 1, 2017

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In order to multiply in April 2017, Steps 1-3 (below) must be completed by:

January 1, 2017

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In order to multiply in August 2016, Steps 1-3 (below) must be completed by:

June 1, 2016

 

The Assessment Process

To begin the multiplication process, Parish Leader(s) will be expected to conduct an initial interview with their apprentices according to the guide below (Step 1: Parish Leader). Upon completing the initial interview, please email a scanned copy of your notes to BOTH Drew Knowles AND your cohort leader. This constitutes your official recommendation. At this point, your apprentices are in our system, and they will be responsible to drive the rest of the process. (Cohort leaders, upon completing your interviews, please submit your notes to Drew as well.)

Click the buttons below to access the assessment materials.

 
 

Step 4:

Apprentices, fill out the form below to schedule an interview with Drew Knowles:

Names *
Names
 
 

The Multiplication Process

Following an interview with the Pastor of Parishes, your apprentices will either be (1) asked to wait or (2) invited into a 6-week apprentice training course. If they are asked to wait, they will likely be given conditions. We encourage you as a Parish Leader to help them process and work through those conditions. However, if they are invited into the training course, it's time to begin exploring Step 5.

Step 5:

Establish a core team. This process should be driven by open and honest conversation between the parish leaders and apprentices (cohort leaders are also available to help). No two multiplications are the same, which means that healthy multiplication requires prayer and much discernment.

Under construction...

Step 6:

Celebrate and send. Once a core team has been established, it's time to schedule a multiplication party. Typically, this will occur during your final parish gathering all together. Multiplication is bittersweet, but it should always be celebrated. The sample script below should help you to develop a few talking points.

Under construction...

Step 7:

Incubate. Parish incubation is essential to the health and vitality of each Parish, especially future Parishes. This is in large part how we guard and propagate the biblical vision throughout our decentralized church model. A month of prayer and vision prior to public launch can only be a good thing.

Under construction...

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Training


These trainings are designed to facilitate discussion and learning within your parish cohorts. Whenever a new training is posted, we'll let you know via Sojourn Online. Please feel free to use Sojourn Online for discussion as well.

Training


These trainings are designed to facilitate discussion and learning within your parish cohorts. Whenever a new training is posted, we'll let you know via Sojourn Online. Please feel free to use Sojourn Online for discussion as well.

Watch the following video (1m 57s):

 

Proverbs 4:23 (NIV)

Above all else, guard your heart,
    for everything you do flows from it.

 

When the Bible talks about your heart, it's talking about the seat of your most fundamental longings. God has designed human beings to act in accordance with our desires, and that's precisely why God wants to be object of our desire. Thus, Proverbs 4:23 is calling us to guard our loves and longings and desires "with all vigilance" (ESV).

 

Psalm 37:4 (ESV)

    Delight yourself in the LORD,
        and he will give you the desires of your heart.

 

Cohort Discussion Questions

What do you functionally desire more than God? How do you see this desire working itself out through your actions?

How should we define discipleship? What should it entail?

Read Philippians 4:7. What two things are guarded by the peace of God?

In what ways does our discipleship tend to neglect the heart (as defined above)? What are the consequences of this tendency?

 

Action Items

This month, think about how to target the heart in your parish gathering discussions. More than simply thinking rightly, how can we help people to desire rightly?

Think about someone (perhaps you) who is struggling with a particular sin. What desire lies beneath the sinful action? How can you help them to see this desire fulfilled in Jesus?

 
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Resources


As Parish Leaders, we know that you get asked all sorts of questions. Whenever necessary, please refer to the bank of resources below. If you have an unanswered question, or if you think we're missing a resource, please let us know using the form below.

Resources


As Parish Leaders, we know that you get asked all sorts of questions. Whenever necessary, please refer to the bank of resources below. If you have an unanswered question, or if you think we're missing a resource, please let us know using the form below.

Essential Resources

 

Theology / Position Papers

 

The Benevolence Fund

Each church within the Sojourn Houston family of churches contributes to a central benevolence fund. Many people make weekly contributions in coordination with a day-long fast. You can set up a recurring donation by clicking here. If you or someone within your parish requires financial assistance, please complete the form below:

Name of Parish Leader *
Name of Parish Leader
Name of Person Requesting Benevolence *
Name of Person Requesting Benevolence
 

 

Ask a Question / Request a Resource

Name *
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