Tag: Deacons on the Move conference

‘WITH’

At our recent national conference ‘Deacons on the Move’, Deacon Alison Handcock (Bath and Wells)

Image result for rev alison handcock

led our final worship which included this reflection, read by different voices, which she calls simply ‘With‘.  A number of people were very struck by it and have asked for a copy:  Alison is happy for you to use it.

Image result for WITH

WITH

In the ordination service for deacons the word ‘with’ appears several times.  Deacons are called to work with priest and bishops as ambassadors of the kingdom;  to study the scriptures with the people of God.

Deacons are ordained to an outward-focussed sacramental and representative role, and called to model collaborative ways of working and empower all the people of God in their own diaconal ministry.  Some deacons work and connect between other agencies and churches as a bridge or stepping stone, linking the church with the world.

In the process of this pondering I looked up the word ‘with’ in the Gospels and was fascinated to see when it showed up. There were lots of occurrences when Jesus is with his disciples, but several too when he catches them arguing with one another. . . a stumbling block to working with.

(Different Voices)

  1. There’s 72 of us – how on earth does he expect us to work together? We’re all different, all passionate about our cause . . . and about our way of doing things. It would be so much easier to go alone to do things my way! It’s simpler, less complicated.
  1. But we are called to go together. ..to ‘be’ and to ‘go’ WITH Him and WITH others to places beyond our boundaries.
  1. But both prove difficult at times;  for ‘WITH’ requires us to listen. . . to truly listen, to him and to others.
  1. WITH’ forces us to let go of control and our preconceived ideas.
  1. WITH’ confronts the language of comparison and coercion by respecting and rejoicing in difference.
  1. WITH’ challenges us to walk slower and more intentionally, to carefully navigate choppy waters in order to see a different view.
  1. But ‘WITH’ also gives us companionship, friends to party with and a box full of gifts, which when shared, open doors to a new future.
  1. ‘WITH’ opens up new ways of working, of hearing, of living together –where no-one is greater than the other and all are called to serve a world beyond ourselves.
  1. WITH’ is counter cultural, it goes against the grain . . . take no sandals, no purse, no attitude that will hinder what Jesus says.
  1. To ‘GO WITH’, in body or in mind, is to go beyond what we know – to discover a new shape, a new language, a new hope  . . . together.
  1. ‘WITH’, calls us to represent Christ, WITH his power and authority among the least, the lost and the lonely, and to join in WITH what God is doing, among a people who have not yet learnt the language of ‘WITH’.

Deacon Alison Handcock (Deacons’ conference 2018)

 

(Twitter image With Winner)

('With' is slightly edited for length and for ease of use)

DEACONS ON THE MOVE! DAY CONFERENCE 27 OCTOBER. Book now!

photo2

We’re so excited that this is taking place on 27 October at Queen’s Foundation College in Birmingham!  You’re warmly invited to attend, and bring any enquirers, ordinands, vocations advisers and DDOs with you!  Please do circulate them all with these details.

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/deacons-on-the-move-tickets-42469581662?aff=estw

Because we’ve moved to a bigger venue, more tickets are now available.   Accommodation can also be booked at Queen’s:  contact Queen’s directly at hospitality@queens.ac.uk

Here’s the programme for the day:  conference-programme-deacons-on-the-move

and copied below:

DEACONS ON THE MOVE!

National Conference for the C of E Distinctive Diaconate

The Queen’s Foundation, Birmingham (Frances Young Centre) 

27 October 2018 

Programme 

9.45-10.15                Coffee

10.15                       Welcome and Morning Worship with the Rt Revd David Urquhart, Bishop of Birmingham

10.30                       The Revd Professor Paul Avis:  A Flagship Ministry – Deacons and the Church’s Mission (Part 1)

Related image

11.00                       Questions, pop-up deacons

11.15                       Paul Avis:  Part 2

11.45                       Questions

12.00                       Pop-up deacons, diaconal news:  the Revd Canon Dr David Hewlett, Principal of Queen’s Foundation College

12.30                       Lunch

13.15                       Pop-up deacon followed by discussion groups:

  1. Jessica Foster: the deacon in an inter-faith context
  2. Terry Drummond: the deacon speaking truth to power
  3. Bev Cree: the deacon connecting church and community
  4. Michael Turnbull: diaconal presence in chaplaincy
  5. Chris Saccali: the deacon, refugees & migrants
  6. Alison Handcock: the deacon and sacramental storytelling

14.00                       Pop-up deacon, followed by Panel:  questions and insights

14.30                       The way forward:  discussion followed by plenary with the Revd David Mann, DDO, diocese of York

15.15                       Pop-up deacon and closing worship, followed by tea

STOP PRESS** CHANGE OF VENUE** MORE TICKETS AVAILABLE!

Because our autumn conference, Deacons on the Move, has been so over-subscribed we’ve spent the week moving venues to Queens Foundation college, about 10 minutes down the road from Woodbrooke:  http://www.queens.ac.uk/

The conference will take place in the Frances Young centre.

I’m delighted to say that the move has made lots more tickets available, so if you’ve been disappointed, please go back to the website and book – and bring other people with you!

Accommodation is also available at Queens, which you can book directly with them: hospitality@queens.ac.uk

All details here:  https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/deacons-on-the-move-tickets-42469581662?aff=estw

Please continue to pray for God’s blessing and guidance on this conference.