Facilitating Growth of the Body of Christ through Mission and Outreach

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Unsicker, Janelle
Master of Arts in Earth Literacy
First United Church of Christ in Bremen, Indiana has been in a transitional period for at least 2 years. Two interim pastors and many guests have sustained the services and congregational needs until a pastor was found this fall. Around the same time, our new narthex addition was completed. One of the favorite interim pastors came back to deliver a sermon for the dedication of the new addition. Donald R. Buckthal presented a sermon based on Luke 2:52: “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, in favor with God and man.” Dr. Buckthal wanted to show that the new addition “can be used to assist us in our personal development of a wellrounded or even a successful life.” With the help of my faculty advisor, Pastor Thomas Dean, and the congregation of First United Church of Christ, I would like to outline ways in which we can use the building for growth and development in the ways Dr. Buckthal recommended as well as incorporating the overall themes of the Earth Literacy Program. I would like to develop a program, initiative, or event in each one of the four categories of wisdom, physical, spiritual, and social growth. Some of these programs may already be in place, but can be reorganized with a specific intention. I think my biggest opportunity will be in the mission committee. My focus will fall primarily in this area as well as with outreach.