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When -

June 4 - 7, 2019

Who? -

A small group of clergy-in-charge of parish churches working together with experienced trainer/coaches

To do what? -

1. To better understand the inner dynamics of self and parish around listening and taking counsel. 

2. To increase their ability to shape healthier and more faithful practices around listening and taking counsel. 

How? -

An integration of practical parish issues and Anglican pastoral/ascetical theology and strategy; with a touch of organization development.  Participants come having completed a significant course of reading. They each complete some work prior to the clinic. That work, is in part, based on the readings.

The advance work and time together will help you become more oriented to listening, especially communal processes and around the spiritual life of parishioners.

When we gather the trainer/coaches will facilitate a process in which the participants engage one another and the coaches around the assigned work and the issues and dynamics of their parishes.

Registration: Registration by March 1, 2019 please contact Michelle Heyne. Registration considered confirmed when the $200 fee is sent to Michelle - Payable to The Order of the Ascension.

Participants: Must be the priest-in-charge of a parish church (a vicar, rector, priest-in-charge) 

Location: Queen Anne area of Seattle, WA. 220 W. Olympic Place, Apt 202

Participants: Limit of five

Trainer/coaches: Michelle Heyne, OA and Robert Gallagher, OA.  See "Program Leaders"

Travel: Participants need to plan on traveling to Seattle on Monday June 3th (or prior to that) and departing on Saturday the 8th (or a date after that).

Full Participation: No late arrivals or early departures. Present every day from 9:00 am - 6:00 pm  


Tuesday- Friday. 9:00 am - 6:00 pm  

9:00 Arrive

9:05 Morning Prayer

9:30 Work session 

Lunch - in neighborhood; working space is not available

1:15 Work session

3:00 break

3:30 Work session

5:10 walk to Evening Prayer

5:30 Evening Prayer - at Saint Paul's Parish

6:00 End for day

Beginning and ending times are firm. Other times may be revised as we go along.


Complete assigned readings. You need to come being very familiar with the material. Please read them again if you haven't read them recently.

Seeking God: The Way of Saint Benedict, Esther de Waal - Focus on Chapters 3, 9, and 10; Listening, Authority, and Praying

Silence - in Prayer and Action, Sister Edmee, SLG. A booklet from Fairacres Publications 

"The Invitation: Take Counsel - Stop Grumbling" - web page - Read and reflect on all material. Apply as noted in "advance work" below.

Resource books - The chapters noted contain material for you to use in your advance work. All books are available through Ascension Press - see information at bottom of that web page for ordering individual copies ("Smaller Orders").

Fill All Things: The Dynamics of Spirituality in the Parish Church, R. Gallagher - Chapter Three "The Benedictine Promise" Pay special attention to pages 107 - 121.

In Your Holy Spirit: Traditional Spiritual Practices in Today's Christian Life, M. Heyne - Chapter Five "Participating in Community"

In Your Holy Spirit: Shaping the Parish Through Spiritual Practices, R. Gallagher - Chapter Five "Participating in Community" and Chapter Seven "The Process of Change"

Resource web pages - Methods that may be useful in your advance work

General orienting 

Grumbling & Conflict   Q & A: Take Counsel – Stop Grumbling   Benedictine spirituality and the parish church

Caesura: Grumbling and taking counsel in the parish community        Institutionalism vs. the Body

Feed my sheep - the 21st c. parish priest 

Methods and related theory 

Fake Listening       The Transformation Model     The Relationship Cycle

Likes - Concerns - Wishes Process      All the good ideas

Collaboration 101: Taking a position vs. working with underlying positive concerns      Collaboration 201

Conversations parishes need to have: Three Things       Caesura: Methods for “taking counsel”


Advance Work

1. Use "The Invitation: Take Counsel - Stop Grumbling" -- to reflect upon your own spiritual life and to use in the parish         PDF on using the material    Related reporting form (first part due March 10)

2. Identify one or two listening tools -- use in an appropriate manner in the parish.  We'll post a PDF with ideas by September 1. In the meantime reviewing the listening tools covered in the books by Michelle and me and the blog postings will provide background.

Regarding 1 & 2 above -- If you would like feedback and consultation on how you're proposing to implement these things -- please send one of us an email.

3. Feedback for you. From ten parishioners. On how you listen.

You'll identify ten parishioners to offer feedback on how you listen - as person and as clergy-in-charge. You give each the feedback form along with a stamped envelope addressed to Robert Gallagher, OA  220 W. Olympic Place, Apt 202, Seattle, WA 98119.

Please complete one on youself and return by May 1, 2019

 Ask people to complete it and return it to us no later than May 20, 2019.  PDF listening feedback form 

4. Listening to parishioners about their spiritual life.

You'll interview 5 parishioners on their spiritual life using the questions provided in a PDF we'll send you (available on April 5). Scan your notes into one PDF and send it to Robert Gallagher, OA before May 20, 2019

Reflecting on and learning from the advance work

We see this as an "action - learning process" or a bit of Action - Research. We will post a set of digital worksheets to use in reflecting upon the work you do. You will be asked to send them to us in advance of the clinic. That will allow us to be better prepared to be helpful when we gather.

Core norms

1. Arrive having completed all the advance reading and work.

2. Be present 9:00 am - 6:00 pm every day. We begin with Morning Prayer at 9:05 and end with Evening Prayer from 5:30 - 6:00.  May change start and end times as we get closer.

3. Participants need to go out to lunch each day. Michelle and Robert will not be available for private meetings during the Clinic. We work during lunch and dinner every day of the Clinic.

Each participant arranges and pays own costs -- hotel, meals, travel. There is coffee available at Cafe Ladro and Metropolitan Market on your way up the hill to Robert's apartment. Tea and instant Starbucks coffee will be available throughout the day.

Workshop fee of $200 

 If interested, see evaluation of 2018 Clinic 


Hotels in the neighborhood  - all with a few blocks


Mediterranean Inn 

Inn at Queen Anne 

The Maxwell  


Four Points Sheraton