Listening sessions have concluded. Thanks to everyone who participated!
In February, The Presbytery of Baltimore introduced its strategic planning team and shared information about the planning process. They’ll be counting on your input in the brief months ahead in order to deliver a work product we can share with everyone by mid-year. Stay tuned right here for more information on how you can get involved and lend your voice to this important project.
“The purpose of conducting a focus group is to listen and gather information. It is a way to better understand how people feel or think about an issue, product, or service…designed to obtain perceptions on a defined area of interest in a permissive, nonthreatening environment.”– Richard A. Krueger
Focus Group Listening Sessions
The Planning Team’s schedule for listening sessions is now taking shape. They will be held over a period of eight Zoom meetings, including each of our ministry groups. With inclusiveness in mind, we want to hear as many perspectives as are reflected by Maryland’s diversity and demographics.
In order for the Presbytery to more effectively support its members, it will be essential that its programs and resources are responsive to the needs and aspirations of every one of its churches. This re-alignment can only be possible with your feedback, and we are holding listening sessions to hear directly from church members and leaders alike.
“The object is to get high quality data in a social context where people can consider their own views in the context of the views of others.”– Michael Quinn Patton
For Your Consideration
In our listening sessions, we are asking individuals to imagine themselves in the shoes of different stakeholder groups that might be different from their own. These same questions are below. For each set of questions, put yourself in the position of someone from the group mentioned (e.g. member of a local congregation, pastor or ruling elder, etc). If you identify within this group, simply answer as yourself.
For these two questions, imagine that you are a member of a local congregation…
- As a member of a larger community of believers (the Presbytery of Baltimore), what role do you hope the Presbytery plays (or think it can play) in your daily life?
- When you think about your faith journey and what God is calling you to be and do in the world, how can the Presbytery support that journey?
For these three questions, imagine that you are a pastor or an elder of a congregation in the PoB…
- When you think about guiding and supporting members of your flock, what one or two things do you hope the Presbytery can provide or equip you with?
- In your personal faith journey, what resource or support can the Presbytery provide you with to deepen your relationship with Christ?
- We often think that adding things to what we already provide as the only way of helping someone, if the Presbytery could eliminate or reduce one or two things, what would they be?
For these two questions, imagine that you are a member of the local community surrounding your church (but that you do not attend)…
- What might God be calling the Presbytery of Baltimore to do within your local community?
- As you have been salt and light within your community, how could the Presbytery support you?
- As apostles of reconciliation, we are called to serve those on the margins, what role do you believe the Presbytery has in support of the challenge?
- In what ways does the Presbytery get in the way of this call?
- When you hear the phrase “those on the margins,” what groups of people do you think of?