The Power of Commitment

In 2003, Paulist Press published a collection of hands-on, effective strategies to reach and serve the American people. The collection, edited by Paul Wilkes and Marty Minchin, titled "Best Practices from America's Best Churches," looks at:

     * INREACH: Defining Faith Commitments

     * EVANGELIZING: Effectively Connecting with Your Community

     * LAY LEADERSHIP: The Power of the Faithful

     * CHURCH DYNAMICS: Making Ministry Work

     * ON THE EDGE: Radical Church Models


The final Chapter is “The Power of Commitment: It Can Happen Anywhere," by Marjory Zoet Bankson. It describes the life of Seekers Church, at the crossroads of inclusion and commitment at a time when the community was standing on the threshold of moving into our own newly-renovated space.


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Thoughts on Membership


Hollis Vail and his wife Liz were part of Seekers Church as it began. They catalyzed the beginning of the Growing Edge Fund, which helps people in Seekers Church explore the emergence of new call by providing financial support, accountability and companionship. Hollis also convened a monthly breakfast gathering of men from Seekers and the wider community. His book, "Essences of Love" explores in more detail the themes he raises in this discussion paper.


These reflections by Hollis offer some insight into belonging at Seekers Church from the perspective of a 20-year participant who had chosen not to make the commitment to full membership. Some elements of "belonging" have changed in the 15 years since Hollis offered these insights, including the development of two types of commitment - Stewards and Members. (For a description see the "Guide to Seekers Church" in the Core Documents section.) There are still many active participants in the life of Seekers Church who choose not to commit themselves as either Members or Stewards.

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Who Do We Say We Are?

This term paper by Kate Cudlipp looks at the history of Seekers Church as it appeared in 2002. Kate was a Steward of Seekers Church and a member of the Servant Leadership Team. She was also Chair of the Ecumenical Council of the Church of the Saviour, where she coordinated and facilitated the sale of the Headquarters building where Seekers Church was born in 1976.



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The Rhythm of Renewal

In 1995, LuraMedia published a collection of twenty-two essays by “remarkable women of faith. Each writes in response to the same set of questions; each approaches her subject from her own perspective; each tells her unique story.”


Here are the questions that shaped the essays:

     * How did you get where you are without losing heart?

     * What holds you in the church?

     * Who calls you to continue?

     * What hope do you hold out for yourself and the church and other women in it?

     * What words can you offer thoughtful Christian women who find the struggle continuing – and exhausting?


Chapter 9 is “The Rhythm of Renewal” by Marjory Zoet Bankson. It offers reflections on losing heart and finding it again as part of the spiritual path, a path shared by many at Seekers Church.


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