A congregation’s region is a key component to the New Beginnings process. The regional representative—usually the regional minister or someone appointed on behalf of the regional minister, often a retired pastor or “regional elder” — serves as a coach and offers support and encouragement to the congregation during the New Beginnings process.
The regional representative first helps identify and invite congregations to a “Come and See New Beginnings” event. This free, two-hour session is led by a Hope Partnership staff person and offers a “no commitment required” introduction to New Beginnings. Church leaders are encouraged to attend and ask questions about the service. New Beginnings request forms are distributed at this event, to be returned typically within 30 days. The completed request form is necessary for initiating the New Beginnings service.
The regional representative attends the evening meeting with the congregation on the day of the New Beginnings assessment. A guided “appreciative inquiry” session is facilitated by the regional representative, using materials provided by Hope Partnership.
The regional representative also participates in the follow-up leadership training. At this event, hosted by a local congregation, the regional representative leads worship and provides support to the congregational participants.
After the training and subsequent small group sessions in congregations, the region’s role varies. In some regions, the role might be more hands-on, helping a church strategize its particular future; in other regions, the role may be more of a quiet partner, lending encouragement as requested, but always joined in prayer for the mission of the congregation.
A “New Beginnings Playbook for Regions” is available to regional representatives, offering helpful guidance for introducing the New Beginnings Assessment Service to your region. Contact Hope Partnership at 800-274-1883 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.