I hope you are as excited about this weekend’s all-church retreat as I am. It is a delight for me to work on this event with my old friend, Daniel Pryfogle. I believe you will also be delighted to get to know him as he leads us through a process of learning to “Lead through Story.” Daniel grew up the son of a Southern Baptist pastor in San Leandro. I got to know when he and his wife joined Lakeshore Avenue Baptist Church in Oakland. Before entering the American Baptist Seminary of the West, Daniel was a journalist, working with the newspaper in Alameda. Daniel is the founder and CEO of Signal Hill Communications. Currently the Pryfogles live in Cary, NC, with their two young adult daughters. He is an excellent writer and preacher, a deep thinker, a great story teller and generally fun to hang out with. It’s not too late to join us, if you’re available.
A few details about the retreat:
Friday evening we will meet in the church Parlor.
Part 1: Friday night, 7:00 to 9:00 PM, “Story as Formation: To start we will explore foundational stories or primary narratives — the stories that form our identities, personally and collectively — then set the stage for story’s prospective power as catalyst for forming/reforming identity.”
Saturday, we will meet in the church parking lot to carpool to Valley Presbyterian Church in Portola Valley. It is a lovely setting in a Redwood Grove. We will have morning refreshments and a box lunch at noon. (If you can pay for your lunch that will help defray our expenses.)
Part II: Saturday morning, 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM, “Story as Disruption: We will inquire into personal, congregational and biblical stories when the narrative interrupts, disorients or reverses what’s expected or desired.”
Part III: Saturday, 1:00 to 4:00 PM, “Story as Innovation: We will explore the creative force of story — how it revises our vision of reality and reorients us to what’s possible — then draw from our stories signs of change and prospects for the future.”
Sunday we will be back here in our own Sanctuary. The regular schedule will be inverted. There will be a retreat session from 10 to 11 AM, followed by a 15 minute break and then closing worship. Our theme for the worship time is from Acts 4:20, where Peter proclaims to the religious authorities, “for we cannot help but tell a story about what we have seen and heard.”
Part IV: Sunday, 10 AM to 12:30 PM – “Story as Witness: We will encounter story in the manifold ways of witness that shape us as community — our seeing, our experiencing, our sharing.
Remember this is an event for the whole family – young and old. If for some reason you can’t come to the entire retreat, please feel free to attend any of the individual sessions. Daniel is taking into account that everyone might not be able to be there for the entire experience. I look forward to spending time with you all this weekend looking at how we might “Lead through Story.”
Together, let us strive…to know God’s love!