5 New Ideas (February 2017)

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Every month we send you just 5 ways you can better equip Vital Congregations and make disciples of Jesus Christ. Here’s this month’s issue!

Idea 1Recover the ancient purpose of Lent. Use Living Our Baptismal Calling, the Lent worship and discipleship series from Discipleship Ministries, to help your congregation live out the vows of the baptismal covenant. The series includes both ideas and full services for worship, leader guides for formation groups and outlines for Courageous Conversation events on four different topics, plus graphics and new music. For more information, go to

Idea 2Grants available for new church starts. New United Methodist faith communities can apply for up to $2,500 in promotional products provided by a grant from United Methodist Communications, in partnership with New Church Starts (Path 1). The grant is a one-time, nonmonetary award to help raise awareness of new churches. To be eligible, applicants must be either new church communities or newly organized places of worship for making disciples of Jesus Christ, and be within the first five years of development. For more information and to apply, go to

Idea 3Need some help explaining the meaning of Lent? Use the article Lent 101, prepared by The Upper Room, as a helpful way to talk about ashes, prayer and fasting, and about preparing for Easter Sunday. The article also includes 10 ideas for spiritual practices that offer promise for experiencing a meaningful Lenten season. Get Lent 101 at

Idea 4Help young adults live a life of faith. Young People's Ministries has collected devotions by a group of talented young United Methodists from around the world who offer their experiences to help their peers on the path of discipleship. Use the devotions in your Young Adult ministry, to discuss with friends or for your own personal study. Find the most recent devotion at Or find links to all of the devotions at

Idea 5Get tools to help your church’s lay leaders. Guidelines for Leading Your Congregation 2017-2020 provides help in 26 ministry areas, including church leadership, as well as areas focused on nurture, outreach and witness. The booklets get new lay leaders off to a good start and serve as a reference resource for all lay leaders. The guidelines are available from Cokesbury at downloads are available from the Discipleship Ministries at

That’s all this month. 5 more ideas coming your way in March.


Rev. Junius B. Dotson

New Equipping Disciples Blog: The Equipping Disciples blog is a space for Discipleship Ministries staff and guest bloggers to offer inspiration and a unique perspective to growing disciples. Read the latest posts »

Next LIVE broadcast with Rev. Junius B. Dotson February 7 at 11:30 a.m. Central Time: Join the Rev. Junius B. Dotson for his monthly broadcast on Facebook.


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