Since returning from Greenbelt a lot of my time has been taken up preparing for future things.
First of all I was preparing for our Effective Student Work and Group Leader training. I ran sessions on the faith and spirituality of students, how to run a workshop, and worship planning. It was really interesting to spend time reflecting on the spiritual journeys we are all on, and I found a model I'd not come across before, the Gray Matrix which was helpful in exploring that faith isn't just about what we know, but also how open we are to it. In the workshop on running a workshop, we decided we all needed to #BeLikeJim who was the world's best group facilitator.
Cotton Bud discussions were also a big hit. This is where everybody has three cotton buds and every time you speak you have to relinquish a cotton bud, you can give one up if you agree with a point but don't want to say anything and can give one to someone else if they have run out and you want to know what they have to say. You can't, however, ask for more; as my mum would say "when they are gone, they are gone."
Last week also had me preparing Grassroots, the North West Newsletter that will be going out in this week's mailing. Then Friday morning I got out the flip chart paper and tackled some of the big questions for the SCM Gathering in Lancaster in November A Light for All. More to come on that in the coming weeks.
A few other things have been across my desk this week, much of it getting ready for welcome weeks. I'm hoping to get to four university campuses across three welcome weeks. Speaking of my desk I think I'm now settled, for the time being. I've unpacked the box that was stored in the Bee room* at St Peter's House during the summer.
I've prepared for our General Council meeting this Saturday, and I've met with almost students and church leaders at the welcome service of Rev'd Caroline Wickens the new Superintendent of the Manchester Circuit.
I've updated my train count. September so far is down at just 13, as while I was at the training I was staying with a colleague. This does mean my bus count is up to 7, and 2 Manchester Trams on the day there was a train strike.
For those of you who like to pray for the North West please pray for:
- Student's preparing to leave home for the first time.
- Chaplaincies and churches preparing to welcome them.
- SCM's preparations for the coming term.
*The Bee room is where we keep the things for the bees - not the bees themselves - they are on the roof.