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Podcast highlights PC(USA) worshiping communities


Season 2 features leaders shaping ‘New Way’ communities to do innovative ministry

November 8, 2019

DeAmon Harges, the “Roving Listener,” is on the first podcast of the second season of “New Way.” (Photo courtesy of Ted Talk Indianapolis)

Those who aspire to do innovative ministry now have an innovative resource available. The “New Way” podcast, which debuted in January with host the Rev. Sara Hayden, recently completed its second season, and episodes are available on the podcast’s website.

In the first episode of Season 2, Hayden has a conversation with DeAmon Harges of Broadway United Methodist Church in Indianapolis. Known as the original “Roving Listener,” Harges developed and organized community in his neighborhood by paying attention to gifts, passions and dreams.

By listening to his neighbors — in his Ted Talk he describes his work as “making the invisible visible” — Harges discovered they had everything they needed to do the work they were being called to do.

“That concept, those needed resources right there in one’s own neighborhood and community, relates very well to new worshiping community work,” Hayden said.

Produced by Atlanta-based artist and pastor Marthame Sanders, New Way explores these kinds of connections between people and their communities — and the way that context shapes faith. Sanders also hosts a weekly podcast “Aijcast,” which is part of the 1001 New Worshiping Communities movement.

“Eavesdropping on Sara’s conversations with these movement leaders continues to be a gift to me,” Sanders said. “You can sense profound love, respect and admiration for the work we are involved in.”

Shawna Bowman is the guest on an episode of the “New Way” podcast. (Photo courtesy of Aijcast)

In the second episode of the most recent season, Hayden visits with Shawna Bowman of Friendship Presbyterian Church in Chicago. Bowman, an artist and pastor, used to gather with the worshiping community at a train station. Now Friendship worships in a local theater.

“One of the questions which came up in Shawna’s community is ‘How do you live with hope, being so profoundly disappointed by what is happening in the world today?’”

Hayden said, “As a visual artist, Shawna uses her theological and spiritual insights about how to inhabit space in a way that allows one to find God in solidarity with them.”

Other guests in Season 2 include Jeya and Daniel So of Anchor City Church in La Jolla, California; Nancy Graham Ogne of Hope Presbyterian Church at Lake Nona in Orlando, Florida; and Kearni Warren, who is piloting a ministry for caregivers through the 1001 New Worshiping Communities residency program in collaboration with the Presbytery of Philadelphia and Elizabeth Anderson, a philosophy professor at the University of Michigan.

Season 2 features poignant moments like:

  • The Sos talking about their deep respect for each other and their gifts — and what it’s like to be a third-culture woman in ministry in the male-dominated world of church planting
  • Graham Ogne remembering the profound impact her mother’s cancer diagnosis had on her childhood
  • Warren, realizing how she put her own life on hold while caring for a family member, answering God’s call by entering the “1001” residency program to pursue caring for those who care for someone else
  • Anderson describing to Hayden her admiration for the early abolitionists

You can listen directly from the website:  

  • Episode 1, DeAmon Harges (“The Roving Listener”)
  • Episode 2, Shawna Bowman (Blackbox theater)
  • Episode 3, Jeya and Daniel So, Part 1 (“Doing all the things” together)
  • Episode 4, Jeya and Daniel So, Part 2 (“Stupid dreams”)
  • Episode 5, Nancy Graham Ogne (Sitting up and paying attention)
  • Episode 6, Kearni Warren (Visions of those who care)
  • Episode 7, Elizabeth Andersen (Philosophy, pragmatism and faith)

In 2012, the 220th General Assembly of the PC(USA) declared a commitment to a churchwide movement that resulted in the creation of 1001 worshiping communities over the next 10 years. At a grassroots level, nearly 500 diverse new worshiping communities have already formed across the nation.

For a visual archive of leaders and communities from the movement, follow 1001 on Instagram @1001nwcpcusa.

 Paul Seebeck, Mission Communications Strategist

Today’s Focus:  1001 New Worshiping Community

Let us join in prayer for: 

PC(USA) Agencies’ Staff
Lydia Kim, Presbyterian Mission Agency
Regina Kimbrough, Presbyterian Foundation

Let us pray:

Dear Lord, may we respond to your call, taking the gospel into the entire world. Help us to bear witness to your love as we do your work throughout the global community. Amen.

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