The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Listening together

Contemplative decision-making transforms congregations

Believe it or not, some of Tim Emerson's most spiritual moments happen at church council meetings.

"I'm in the car going home, and I reflect back on how I sometimes feel closest to God when we sit in silence and pray before making decisions," the parishioner says of council meetings at Faith Lutheran Church, Waconia, Minn., a small community about 25 miles west of Minneapolis.

This sense of calm satisfaction hasn't always marked council discussions at the growing congregation, says Dan Warnes, a pastor of Faith.

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