The Fields

There are many ways to gather, many 'fields' upon which to come together as God's family - life celebrations, acts of service, conversations and dialogues, prayer and worship. Check out our Gatherings listings for some of the activities on each of these fields that have already taken place, are in the planning, or are suggested.

But all congregations are strongly encouraged to take to the fields on your own, to follow where God would lead you to meet others of The Body. And please share your ideas, inspirations and encounters with all of us so we may all learn and grow together.

Celebrating Life!

As families we get together for reunions; we gather to celebrate Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays.

We also gather as faith families: to celebrate new life and new unions; to mourn the loss of loved ones; to share a meal.

Why do we find it uncomfortable to entertain the thought of doing all these things with another faith community?

Consider holding rummage sales, picnics, concerts with other congregations. Get to know each other, have fun and show the world we really do like each other!

Lord, when did we see you hungry...? (Matthew 25:37)

We serve Christ every time we reach out to those in need.

We don't think twice about taking part in our church's outreach programs.

We don't think twice about volunteering for the American Red Cross, or donating our money and goods to emergency relief efforts.

Why is it that we balk at uniting with other Christian churches in serving God's people in need?

There are many trans-congregational initiatives already working in the fields. Visit our Links page to learn more.

What you did not do...

When needs go unmet, or when those needs are met only in a material way by secular programs, what are we to say in justification of the declined opportunity to serve as one church?

The Art of Conversation

It seems one of the most difficult things for us is to listen to each other, to put aside preconceptions, stereotypes and prejudices, and simply to hear a thought that is different.

Church leaders have learned to listen, to respect the strange other, to converse instead of rail, reject, defend.

Why can't we do the same? If we begin understanding that each seeks to follow Jesus, how is it that we cannot hear about another's faith walk without judging?

"Do not judge, or you too will be judged." (Matthew 7:1)

That means us.

"By their fruits you will know them." (Matthew 7:20)

If someone with whom I disagree on matters of doctrine is producing good fruit, how can I judge them to be a rotten tree?

"'Come now, and let us reason together,' say the Lord." (Isaiah 1:18)

Let us open ourselves to the gift that we are to each other, to the insights and blessings we have to share.

Where two or more are gathered...

Jesus didn't say, "Where two or more are gathered who regularly attend the same house of worship..."

One of the first things we need to do, and one of the easiest things to do, is simply to gather in prayer. Whether we are in the same place or 'gathered' by joining our spirits in prayer, even while our bodies are in different places, we are still one in the Spirit, one in the Lord.

Trans-congregational prayer groups, joint prayer vigils, common prayers during Sunday worship - all serve to unite us in a real, tangible, grace-giving way. Start your own, take a look at our Gatherings , or email us your ideas. Please.

The family that prays together stays together. We are the family of God.

If not now, when?

Now is the time to begin realizing the uniting power, the life- and world-changing power, of common prayer.