PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (Feb. 14, 2019) -- Leaders from each of Holston Conference’s nine districts participated in a “Train the Trainers” event Feb. 8-9 at Hilton Garden Inn.
About 85 people participated in two days of worship and workshops as part of the Strategy Team’s launch and development of “missional hubs” throughout Holston Conference.
Rick Cherry, Holston treasurer, presented a $45,000 check during the gathering, signifying the Strategy Team’s plan for each of Holston’s nine districts to receive $5,000 as “seed money” to develop their missional hubs and related ministries.
“It’s about strengthening the connection, and there’s no better time to do that now,” said Mike Eastridge, Strategy Team chair.
Leading much of the training was the Rev. Nancy Rankin, former district superintendent of the Western North Carolina Conference’s Northern Piedmont District.
“We’re not looking for you to be overly busy,” she said. “We would rather you do fewer things and go deeper, to develop relationships that last a long time,” Rankin said.
On Friday night, the Rev. Stephen Handy led worship and celebrated Holy Communion with Bishop Dindy Taylor. The Rev. Rusty Taylor provided music. Handy is senior pastor of McKendree United Methodist Church in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.
The Rev. Susan Groseclose, Holston associate director of connectional ministries, spoke on discipleship and shared information from the denomination's "See All the People" campaign.
According to training materials, a missional hub is a “place where our churches connect; birth and nurture mission ideas; and engage in relationship-building ministries for the transformation of the community and the world.”
Also, “the missional hub provides a framework for district superintendents to guide the process and live into the work of mission and ministry in their respective districts. Every congregation, as determined by the district superintendent, will be part of a missional hub to be connectional and to grow in fruitfulness within their missional field.”
The Strategy Team uses #passionintoaction to express their hopes for the success of missional hubs.