Colossian Blog

Displaying all posts by Jennifer Vander Molen.
TCF Website Wins ADDY Award
March 22, 2017 | Jennifer Vander Molen
TCF Website Wins ADDY Award
Last month, The Colossian Forum's website won an a bronze ADDY Award from the American Advertising Federation of West Michigan. Our partners Grey Matter Group submitted TCF in the consumer website category. The ADDY Awards is the industry’s largest competition with over 40,000 entries showcasing the very best in markets from television ads, billboards, brochures, and websites. Nationwide, the American Advertising Awards attract more than 5 million entries each year. Needless to say, we were thrilled that our small religious nonprofit website was recognized in the same category as much larger companies like the Meijer grocery chain. A huge shout out to our partners at Grey Matter Group for their excellent work on our site!
New Job Opportunities at TCF
March 15, 2017 | Jennifer Vander Molen
New Job Opportunities at TCF
We have two opportunities to join our team here at The Colossian Forum. One is a full-time position as a Manager of Church Partnerships and Care, and the other is a part-time, paid Library Intern. Manager of Church Partnerships and Care The key components of this position include: Expanding TCF’s network of church partners. Providing nurturing leadership in the formation of The Colossian Way (TCW) leaders. Designing, implementing, and leading the TCW Community of Practice. Ensuring TCF understands and exceeds our customer’s requirements and needs. You can read more about the responsibilities, qualifications, and how to apply on our jobs page. Special Library Intern This internship will focus on the development of special libraries for two non-profit organizations (TCF and Issachar Fund). The intern will work with staff from the two organizations to identify a viable Integrated Library System for our collections, procure the Integrated Library System and create the Integrated Library System’s base structure to meet the needs of the organizations, establish an intake and cataloging process for all new materials purchased by the organizations, train staff in use of the Integrated Library System and intake/cataloging process, and determine means for processing and loading currently owned materials into the Integrated Library System. You can read more about the responsibilities, qualifications, and how to apply on our jobs page.
Applications Now Being Accepted for The Colossian Way Experience
March 1, 2017 | Jennifer Vander Molen
Applications Now Being Accepted for The Colossian Way Experience
We’re excited to announce that applications are now being accepted for small groups to engage in The Colossian Way experience. We designed The Colossian Way to help Christians of all ages engage in difficult questions in ways that build up love of God and neighbor. By gathering Christians who disagree, confessing that all things hold together in Christ (Colossians 1:17), bringing our difficulties before God in prayer, listening to varied experts on the topics, attending to Scripture and the resources of the faith, and learning to listen and talk across difference, we can trust the Holy Spirit to transform us into the image of Christ. Training Dates The first step in The Colossian Way experience is a 2½-day leader training retreat, held in Grand Rapids, MI on these dates: Thursday-Saturday, May 18-20, 2017 (sexuality topic only) or Wednesday-Friday, September 20-22, 2017 (sexuality and origins topic) Commitments Churches and leaders who participate in The Colossian Way commit to: Attend the leader training retreat Meet with coaches and other small group leaders during the experience Gather an intergenerational group of 10-12 participants for the small group experience Lead the small group through ten 90-minute meetings over a set schedule Cost Cost for The Colossian Way experience is $1,500 per small group, which includes the leader training retreat (hotel accommodations, meals, and training materials for two leaders), materials (leader and participant guides for the entire small group), The Colossian Way promotional pieces for your church, personal coaching for leaders, and membership in The Colossian Way Community of Practice. How to Apply You can find an online application and more information about The Colossian Way experience here. Be on the lookout for 2018 training retreat dates posted soon on our events page. We can’t wait for you to join us on The Colossian Way!
Meet Our Board Members
February 15, 2017 | Jennifer Vander Molen
Meet Our Board Members
Here at The Colossian Forum, our staff is one part of a greater team of partners, fellows, and advisors. The wisdom, direction, ideas, and challenges provided are a key part of shaping our mission, vision, and ministry. We're pleased to introduce you to The Colossian Forum's Board of Directors! Our board provides strategic and practical oversight to The Colossian Forum and serve faithfully through leadership, governance, and approving policies. Each brings a wealth of unique and diverse experiences and wisdom to TCF and are unified in their commitment to equip leaders to transform polarizing conflict into deeper spiritual witness. We now have pictures and short bios of all of our board members online. You can meet our Board of Directors here (along with our staff and fellows).
A Humility of Spirit
January 25, 2017 | Jennifer Vander Molen
A Humility of Spirit
Last week I enjoyed being a history fangirl when I attended a lecture from presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin as part of Calvin College’s January Series. She gave some historical perspective on the 2016 election, outlining the evolution of our current primary system and how the party conventions no longer select the candidates. It was fascinating, but what I’ve been chewing on these past few days was her list of presidential leadership attributes. This came out of a conversation she had with the late Tim Russert of NBC. They agreed that journalists and the American people should focus on the leadership attributes of the candidates, not the social battles. Here are the five she discussed, which are also quite applicable to us as religious leaders. Temperament: how your nature impacts your behavior Goodwin pointed out that President Trump’s temperament is pretty clear: winning. But that’s not all the equation. History shows that resiliency is a key part of presidential achievements. Both Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt developed a humility of spirit through their adversity and setbacks, which paved the way for the patience, resiliency, and empathy that were hallmarks of their administrations. Surrounding yourself with key people President Trump recently tweeted a blanket defense of the diverse people in his cabinet. Goodwin said surrounding yourself with people who think differently than you is mirrored by other presidents. (She talks about that in depth in Team of Rivals, about the Lincoln administration). Inspire the best performance from your team Even though you have great people around you, they still need to perform at a high level. Goodwin observed that President Trump has shown himself a hard worker and time will tell if his team yields positive results. Find a way to relax and replenish Self-care is a popular buzzword right now. Goodwin reiterated that presidents also need ways to shake off the anxieties that come with the office. Lincoln went to the theater hundreds of times as president. Teddy Roosevelt was an avid reader and took a two-hour exercise break each day. Franklin Roosevelt hosted a daily cocktail hour where guests had to talk about anything other than the war. Goodwin shared that she hopes President Trump can learn from his predecessors and find a way to relax. “Leadership requires humor and the ability to replenish oneself,” she said. Amen. Communicate with your constituency Newspapers across the county reprinted each of Lincoln's speeches. Teddy Roosevelt had the gift of memorable turns of phrase that stuck with the American public. Every living room with a wireless radio heard Franklin Roosevelt’s voice. President Trump seems to have embraced the new media of Twitter, which may prove to be his legacy (it certainly garners a lot of our attention). Like many of us, I’m struggling with how to move forward in our deeply divided country. I draw hope from a quote that Goodwin shared from former First Lady Abigail Adams, “Great necessities call out great virtues.” As Christians, we are called and commanded to exhibit virtues like patience, kindness, and humility ESPECIALLY in times of great tension, division, and uncertainty. Maybe you’ll join me in reflecting on what a humility of spirit looks like—for ourselves, our churches, and our community of faith.  This originally appeared on The Twelve, a blog of Perspectives Journal.
TCF Welcomes Student Intern Josh Webb
January 18, 2017 | Jennifer Vander Molen
TCF Welcomes Student Intern Josh Webb
Last week, The Colossian Forum welcomed Josh Webb as our new student intern in the Operations and Communications department. Josh is an undergraduate student at Calvin College, where he studies in the religion and music departments. He will be working with us during the spring semester as he completes his degree. Along with his studies and internship, Josh works part-time as the Director of Music Ministries at Leighton United Methodist Church in Caledonia. He and his wife, Kate, married in June of 2015 and currently live in Jenison. Together they enjoy hiking, traveling, and movie marathons! Josh was drawn to The Colossian Forum by a shared passion for seeking grace and discipleship through conflict in the church. He is also looking to gain new work experience before graduating. He will be assisting TCF in several areas including weekly marketing and communications tasks, compiling and editing an e-book, and a market research project. Welcome to the team, Josh!