|Mission & Peace Project(s)

I’m brainstorming about a project I need to do for a class on mission and peace. I have two ideas:

1. Conflict resolution in the church setting. How can we help the world find peace if we can’t even solve our own problems?

Project ideas: Develop church-based seminar on conflict resolution/transformation. Design Sabbath School curriculum on conflict resolution. Outline program/procedures that can be implemented when various conflicts arise.

Possible resources:
–Peacemakers in Action: Profiles of Religion in Conflict Resolution (David Little)
–Hope in the Face of Conflict: Making Peace with Others the Way God Makes Peace with Us (Kenneth Newberger)
–The Peacemaker: A Biblical Guide to Resolving Personal Conflict (Ken Sande)
Blessed Are the Peacemakers: Finding Peace With God, Yourself and Others (Neil T. Anderson and Charles Mylander)
–A Just Forgiveness: Responsible Healing Without Excusing Injustice (Everett L. Worthington Jr.)
–How To Manage Conflict In The Church, Dysfunctional Congregations, Volume III (Norman L. Shawchuck)
–Peacemaking: The Quiet Power : Conflict Resolution for Churches Through Mediation (Terje Hausken)
–Conflict Resolution in the Church (Brian Joseph Galloway)

2. New monasticism/Intentional Communities. How can the church be present in healing and peacemaking ways at the margins of the empire?

Project idea: Write a proposal for starting an intentional community in Benton Harbor. Our pastor has been talking about doing this. I could research how others are doing it, and write up a proposal (theology, logistics, funding, collaborating partners, operations, supervision, etc.).

I’ve appreciated learning about The Simple Way (site is currently down), New Monasticism, CCDA and the Community of Communities. The Irresistible Revolution was my introduction to this form of community and missions, but I’ve never really studied it or visited a community. Jesus for President also touched on this topic. Today 3 members of the Jubilee House spoke at a school forum, and it really sounds amazing.

Possible resources:
–Inhabiting the Church: Biblical Wisdom for a New Monasticism (Jon R. Stock, Tim Otto, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove)
–Living Faithfully in a Fragmented World: Lessons for the Church (Jonathan R. Wilson)
–School(s) for Conversion: 12 Marks of a New Monasticism (Rutba House)
–New Monasticism (Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove)
–Of Widows and Meals: Communal Meals in the Book of Acts (Reta Halteman Finger)
Intimacy and Mission: Intentional Community as Crucible for Radical Discipleship (Luther E., Jr. Smith and Jim Wallis)
–Making Room: Recovering Hospitality As a Christian Tradition (Christine D. Pohl)
all of these I posted on COR

UPDATE: Here are some Christianity Today articles about NM



  1. Hi! Came across your blog and I find this conflict resolution post interesting. Have you heard of Arbinger? (arbinger.com or go to arbingercommunity.ning.com) I took a peace building and conflict resolution class and we spent a lot of time studying and reading up on this material. Especially their books like The Anatomy of Peace and The Choice. There's also another book I read that I found helpful. It's called Bonds That Make Us Free by Terry Warner. Hope this helps! Your project sounds amazing..great idea!

  2. Jeff, I've been listening to (audiobook) Irresistible Revolution and to the excitement of the soon-to-be pastor of a really neat Presbyterian church in downtown Benton Harbor and I think I know what God is telling you to do. =) Come and talk to me!tee-hee. hee.

  3. Our pastor talked about conflict resolution in the church as part of his sermon on the mount series. It was based on Matthew 5:38,39. This is the "eye for an eye" and "turn the other cheek" text. He spoke on how to respond to people who are spreading a false report about you. Biblically, we are told not to seek personal vengeance, for vengeance is the Lord's. His response to this is based on Matthew 18:15-17. Instead we are to confront in love and try to work things out one on one with them. If this fails, bring others with you to confront in love again. If this also fails, then the matter is to be brought before the church. This is done not in vengeance against your adversary, but to try and save them from continuing on their wrong path. This is how conflict within the church is to be dealt with by Jesus' council.

  4. Ku-ulei, I love your photography. Very cool. And, yes, I've enjoyed the two books I've read from Arbinger. I received Anatomy of Peace for Christmas, but I hadn't heard of The Choice. I'll have to look for it. Thanks for the tip.Sarah, Do I know you? I guess probably not. The Irresistible Revolution was amazing. really kicked me in the butt and provoked a bit of imagining. Where is your church going to be?Nick, Thanks for the brief and insightful summary. That's a good overview of the inter-personal aspect. My proposal (this option is what I've decided to tackle) is to make a 13-week Sabbath School curriculum for church-based conflict resolution and peacemaking. Actually, I only have to write the first two and make a plan for the other 11. It will move from inter-personal conflict to intra-church conflict, to intra-denomination conflict (possibly), to how the church can work for peace in the surrounding community and culture.Thanks for all the input on this post. I wish I had time to work on both topics.Also, for those interested in quickly learning more about NM, here are a few articles from Christianity Today. A friend of mine took the pictures for the first Simple Way article, but the pictures aren't included in this online version.http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2005/september/16.38.html?start=1http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2005/september/17.12.htmlhttp://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2006/september/19.100.htmlhttp://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2007/march/32.79.htmlhttp://www.ctlibrary.com/ct/2008/february/23.28.html

  5. Sarah, Do I know you? I guess probably not. The Irresistible Revolution was amazing. really kicked me in the butt and provoked a bit of imagining. Where is your church going to be?Wow. You must be rather scared of me! I would be too. But no, you do know me, it's Sarah from Still Waters, and for some reason I expected that when I was signed in my full name would be obvious. =) I was responding to an e-mail you had sent to some friends…about what God was telling you.

  6. Ha, you got me, Sarah. I thought it might be another Sarah from church being tricky, but now I see it was you being tricky. Are you really listening to IRR? Shane and I are the same age, so when I read it the difference between his life and mine was telling.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s