Sunday, October 22, 2006

Workshops in DC

I went up to National Community Church in Washington, DC on Wednesday for two workshops. The morning session was on Assimilation by Nelson Sercy, Pastor of Journy Church in New York City. The afternoon session was on Right-Brained preaching by Mark Batterson, pastor of NCC in DC.

Nelson helped to plant New Horizons church in Apex, NC before going on Rick Warren's staff as the Director of the Purpose Driven Community. He then started the Journey Church in New York City and in 4 years has seen it grow to over 1000 in attendance. So, he has some good stuff to say. Just a few things that stood out:
  • Everything speaks.
  • If you have been around the place for more than 7 weeks you will not notice many problems
  • Don't let volunteers be greeters; pick them yourself
    • Requirements
      • they have to smile
      • they have to have teeth
  • If you want to know the temerature of a church, stick the thermometer in the pastor's mouth - Rick Warren
  • A church is a family expecting guests
  • Put cool stuff in bathrooms like you might find in your bathroom at the Ritz.
  • The communication card is key
    • have everyone fill it out every week
    • don't begin with a blank for the date. many men won't fill it out if they can't fill in the first blank
    • don't use tear offs
  • They send a free gift (some kind of gift card) for first-time and second-time guests.
  • What is rewarded is repeated.
  • A regular attender says "this is the church that I go to"
  • A member says "This is my church"
  • Ownership is the path to membership
  • People often want to belong before they believe
  • People say no to what is unclear

Mark Batterson planted a church in Washington DC in 1996, that has grown to over 1000 in attendence. He is one of the most read bloggers on the internet and a frequent conference speaker. He also has a new book out called In a Pit With a Lion on a Snowy Day. Mark is a ferocious reader and is brilliant in his ability to cross pollinate between faith and other diciplines.

Some things that stood out:
  • If you have something worth saying it is worth saying to as many people as possible.
  • Intentionally hire inexperience.
  • God's blessings always come with complications
  • 95% of what preachers say is forgotten in 3 days
  • The Holy Grail of preaching is say things that are unforgettable.
  • The most important truths should be communicated in the most unforgettable ways.
  • The best way to do this is to say old things in new ways.
  • The great commandment says to love your God with all of your mind but most seminaries focus only on the left brain.
  • Novelty stimulates the right briain. Familiarity stimulates the left brain.
  • After you sing a song 30 times you cease to think about the words.
  • Good art is a slight deviation from what we expect. Too far is bizarr and not enough is boring.
  • 4 keys to Right-Brian Preaching
    • Cross pollination
    • Cultural Exegisis
    • Creative Incarnation
    • Humor

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