Confession: I am an avid notetaker at conferences. I don’t want to miss one word, one piece of wisdom. After all, I have often paid a pretty penny to attend. I want to grow, to learn, to put what I hear into practice. But I rarely do. Instead I return from the conference, put my notes away and occasionally think about flipping through them again.

Perhaps I’m the only one who fills notebooks at conferences only to let them collect dust on my shelves while the ideas I heard gather cobwebs in my mind. I suspect, however, that I’m not alone. It’s challenging for me to transfer what the speakers have said to my context. And it’s difficult to put their recommendations into practice when I get home.

For this Talking Points conference—Resilience: Finding Wholeness in Ministry by Way of the Cross, we wanted to give you resources that would not only help you keep the conversation going but would also assist you in transferring the learning from the conference to your context. To that end, we have developed seven studies that invite active engagement with the conference topics.

The seven studies make use of videos developed for the conference, recordings of virtual events and Talking Points posts. We designed most of the studies for pastors and ministry leaders. Others will be particularly helpful to ministry students or church leadership teams.

The seven studies are:

  • Preparing for Resilient Ministry.
  • Burnout and Resilience.
  • Self-Care in Ministry.
  • Pursuing Wholeness in Community.
  • Wholeness by Way of the Cross.
  • Wellbeing for Leadership Teams.
  • Caring for Your Pastor.

All of the studies and the videos are available for free on the Cornerstone website. Each study has a participant’s workbook and facilitator’s guide that you can download and print. Some studies include an individual study guide. However, we think going through a study with others is better. As we have learned over the past year, healthy community can contribute to our wellbeing.

We were able to develop these studies and make them available at no cost to you thanks to a generous grant awarded to Grand Rapids Theological Seminary by the Lilly Endowment Inc.—Religion Division.

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