Most of you are already aware, but THIS SATURDAY we will be offering a Community Life & Relationships Seminar from 9am-12pm at Urban Hope (210 E. Tioga Street, Philadelphia, PA 19134). Cost is just $5 and includes lunch.
But what, you ask, is the seminar all about? Glad you asked!
Here’s our agenda:
- consider God’s design for relationships
- discuss biblical obstacles to healthy relationships
- offer practical help for growing in this important area
And, after lunch, we’ll hold two (concurrent) optional seminars:
- community life (Deborah Moss)
- dating & marriage (Bryan & Sharon Stoudt)
You can reserve your spot and register online at cmda.eventbrite.com. We hope to see you there!
Ah, summer. Students take a break from classes. Families go away on vacation. Jackets and sweaters get packed away. Friends meet on sidewalk cafes to catch up and reminisce about the year.
On the other hand, summer is hot, sticky and, well, a bit lethargic. Although the members of your campus leadership team may have dispersed to the ends of the earth immediately after their last exam, it’s critical to stay in touch and keep moving forward toward the fall during the summer.
The good news is that it doesn’t have to take a lot of time. Just a little consistent effort and initiative can have you ready to go when everyone returns in August.
Here’s a simple, suggested checklist to help you get started and make your summer effective:
- It’s all about relationships. Although there are some ‘business’ and planning items to take care of, it’s just as much about deepening your relationships with each other. Teams that stay connected – and like each other – are much more likely to make better plans and form a core group that others want to be part of (see Acts 2:46-47).
- Make technology your friend. While getting together in person is always best, things like Facebook, email and Google Hangouts can help scattered teams stay in touch.
- Plan on meeting once in June, July and August (before everyone returns). In addition to the relationship-building mentioned above, good ideas and plans simply take time to come together. Hopefully, you already started planning for the fall last semester, but a series of short meetings over the summer will help you build on that. Here’s a suggested timeline that may be helpful. Adapt as needed!
- June. (a) Spend some time debriefing on the year – what was good? Not so good? (b) What few things would you like to change? Brainstorm and lay out some possibilities. (c) Take some unstructured relational time and (d) pray for each other and your campus, including the first-years who will be coming.
- July. (a) Now is the time to start getting more specific about the first few weeks back, when first-years will be deciding who their friends will be and what organizations they’ll join. You want CMA to be at the top of their list! So, how and when will you: (1) make sure everyone at least knows about your group? (2) make a first connection? Is it an Activities Fair? A campus-wide email? An ice cream social? (3) hold your first regular meeting? As early as possible is always best. Waiting a few weeks makes your club seem like an afterthought. (b) Connect with any believing faculty or people helping with the ministry, letting them know they’re important to you, that you’d like their involvement without overburdening them, and, asking how you can pray for them. (c) Again, pray for each other and your campus. (d) Huge bonus points for an in-person get together that involves both planning and something fun.
- August. You’re almost there! (a) Confirm and/or adjust the plans you made earlier and pin down details. Who exactly will get the hot dogs and make the banner for the Activities Fair? (Students can join CMDA for free and request a free Welcome Packet, which includes a banner). (b) Pray, pray, pray. (c) How will you follow-up with those who show interest at your initial events? There are ways to do this without seeming creepy. A quick email, friending someone on Facebook, asking them to join you for lunch, talking as you see them on campus, offering advice on studying or where to find churches are all great ways to start building relationships and involvement in your campus group. (d) Get together as a team before classes begin to finish praying and planning.
So, there you go. In just 2-3 hours per month or 4-6 minutes per day [end of infomercial], your campus leadership team can get closer, make plans for the fall, ask God to bless them, and avoid the stress of last-minute planning.
To help you follow, or adapt, the blueprint I’ve laid out above, you can download (necessary to fill in / edit it) this online Google document I’ve created.
Share your own ideas for the summer in the comments section below and enjoy your summer!