Gifts for Growing

Every year Circle of Hope calls on gifted people to help us grow. While most of what we have fits well into a cell or Sunday meeting, we organize further events to help each other grow in particular ways.

Our schedule is arranged around the seasons:

Spring is devoted to Earth: Planting seeds of faith and helping them sprout.

• Summer is devoted to Wind: Taking first steps of life in the Spirit.

• Fall is devoted to Fire: Accepting the gifts we bring to the community and our purpose, and learning to give them.

• Winter is devoted to Water: Deepening resources for transformation.

The rest of our Way of Jesus site is organized in a similar way; it has resources to help us move along on our journey in Christ.

January to March 2020 ▨ Water

Spiritual Development

February 8 ▨ Second Half of Life Day Retreat

Location: 2007 Frankford Ave. Philadelphia

Time: 9:00am to 3:30pm

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Many people see the second half of life as largely about getting old, dealing with health issues, and letting go of life. Not us. What looks like falling apart as we age and falling down as we fail can largely be experienced as "falling upward." That's part of what we will explore together as we invite 40somethings and older to consider how to go deep in the latter half of their life. The cost is $10.

February 26 ▨ Ash Wednesday

Location: At each congregation

Time: 8:00pm

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One of the great things about this inaugural day of Lent is that the ceremony came to include wearing ashes. There are many levels to the symbol. You can enter it on whatever level you choose and give it the meaning it needs to have for you. But it mainly has the two movements of the truest story: 1) it is about grieving the distance between you and God. 2) It is about waking up to the closeness of Christ in letting his light shine on you.

February 26-April 11 ▨ Lent in Cells

Location: In our cells that meet weekly

Time: Various

Each of our daily prayer entries (Wind and Water) during Lent will have a dialogue and prayer section that could be suitable for a cell or family time of mutual encouragement and development. Maybe some cells or other constellations of people will choose to gather each day to pray and dialogue. That would be a great discipline for Lent!

March 8 ▨ Moving Through the Pain

Location: 1125 S. Broad St. Philadelphia

Time: 7:30pm

We need to touch the Savior and receive a tangible touch from him. This is some "worship relief" for tired souls. We are practicing how to reach out to God and discovering how to feel God grasping our hands. Performed and participant music, evocative readings, prayer and connection will lead everyone to be a part regardless of their faith experience. We will move through our pain as individuals and as stand-ins for others.

March 7 ▨ Lent Day Retreat

Location: 3800 Marlton Pike, Pennsauken, NJ

Time: 8:30am to 2:00pm

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Lent is a perfect time to learn new and refresh old spiritual disciplines. This day is an introduction to the season of Lent, contemplative prayer, journaling, and mutual discernment for those who are new to them. For more experienced people, it is a lovely day to be quiet and return to a place of focus as we enter into this great time of the year.

March 27-29 ▨ Women's Retreat

Location: Kenbrook Bible Camp

Time: 7:30pm Friday to 11:00am Sunday

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This retreat is for anyone who wants to explore our freedom in Christ and the various ways we might be hindered from experiencing that freedom. Meeting God personally and sensing the validation of our persons in God's love is at the heart of finding ourselves and our path. This retreat is for gaining encouragement from others to do this spiritual and emotional growing.

April 5-April 12 ▨ Holy Week

Location: Various

Time: Various

Join with Jesus in the drama of his final week. Walk with him from the Hosanna’s of Palm Sunday at our Sunday meetings, all over our region to see Jesus right here in our midst bringing his passion.

  • Monday through Thursday we will have observances at 7:30pm each evening.
  • Good Friday, from 12-3pm, we will have vigils with an imaginative prayer walk for the Stations of the Cross in each of our neighborhoods.
  • Resurrection Sunday will find us on Lemon Hill in Philadelphia (Behind Boathouse Row) to greet the Risen Savior at Sunrise.

Block out the whole week on your calendar to make as many of the observances as possible.

Bible and Theology

February 22 ▨ Old Testament Overview Day Retreat

Location: 3800 Marlton Pike, Pennsauken, NJ

Time: 9:00am to 3:00pm

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Ben White and Jonny Rashid host our annual review of the Old Testament in the Bible. It will have enough stimulation for people who have some knowledge already, but is especially designed for people who need to get the basics down. The day is designed to have the feeling of a retreat, not just a class. Free! But you must sign up by February 11 to come. $5 donation for simple lunch if you don't bring your own.

March 2 ▨ Doing Theology Cohort

Location: 2212 S. Broad St. Philadelphia, PA

Time: 7:30pm to 9:30pm

The Doing Theology Mission Team invites everyone into a dialogue on: The relevance of protesting. Is it Christian? Does it make a difference?

Marriage and Parenting

February ▨ Village Parenting Online Dialogue and Resource Review

Location: circleofhope.net/villageparenting and Parents Listserv

Time: Varies

We want to develop our online community and introduce new people to some of our resources.

Business and Finance

Date TBA ▨ Making the Most of Your Money

Location: TBD

Time: 10:00am-12:00pm

The Capacity Core team and Everence provide a workshop to help people gain practical skills for managing finances.

Community Building

January 13 ▨ About Making a Covenant

Location: TBD

Time: 7:30 p.m.

The pastors lead prospective covenant-makers through the basic meaning and practicalities of this important step. The covenant is the core of love and mutuality that holds our whole church together. It’s not a matter of being in or out, it’s a matter of saying yes to Jesus, to our common strategy. We want to be a real people living in real love.

January 27 and March 23 ▨ About Circle of Hope

Location: TBD

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Want to learn more about Circle of Hope but aren’t sure how to ask? This is a great place to do that. We want to talk about who we are and what we are doing. You might have other questions too. Why do we meet at night? Why do we multiply? Why are we Christians? What’s the point of planting churches? Let’s answer them together. We hope we learn as much from you as you do from us.

April to June 2020 ▨ Earth

Stay tuned for this section!

July to September 2020 ▨ Wind

Stay tuned for this section!

October to December 2020 ▨ Fire

Stay tuned for this section!