The File

last updated on: 28th Apr 2014

 ‘The File’ is a library of resources, designed to be led and run locally.  In addition to the one off sessions which can be led in an evening, there are also links to longer courses.  The courses and events included in this pack are offered as a resource to mission and ministry. They do not provide one size fits all answers. They offer opportunities to learn together, to release and engage new ministries and gifts, and above all for people to participate in developing the mission and ministry of their local Church or Christian Community.

Sessions are designed to appeal to a range of learning styles and to be led locally, without the need for an external facilitator.  Some of the longer courses can be led locally, others might need some external leadership - either way please contact any of the Mission and Ministry Team here for more information.  To read an introduction from Bishop Tim to The File click here.

How do we decide what might be most appropriate for us?
Planning a resource event or deciding whether to run a course is not easy.  There are key decisions to be made. To help, you can download a simple graphic template here which asks five key questions, that will help you discern what might be helpful in your context before you embark on a particular programme. This will help ensure that the delivery of any course or event should also fit into an overall flow, or direction.  This template should be read in conjunction with this introductory note, which expounds the questions and underlying values further.  It is shown that only 10% of effective learning comes from courses. The rest relies upon experiencing new things, learning alongside others, and reflecting on experience.  So in planning try and be open to a course not being the sole solution - what else might need to be in place to support and enable learning to take root.

The following is in three sections:   

Part 1 - Current Sessions, all available to download and run locally

Part 2 - Potential Sessions, half written ones which can be prepared if demand is sufficient can be

Part 3 - Course Bank, a list of longer courses (varying between three weeks and a year) available to borrow from, or run in collaboration with, the Mission and Ministry Team.

A full list of sessions, with guides as to what might be most helpful when, can be downloaded here


Part 1 - Current Sessions (all downloadable below)

Welcoming the Newcomer - a session to consider what it is like being a new person in a church and how worshipping communities can offer warmth of welcome rather than just a greeting.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying checklist here.

The Faith Journey - a session exploring how people are coming to faith today and how the church may respond and engage with changes in the how people are making the journey.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying PowerPoint here.

Sharing our Faith - a session to think about stories of what God has done in our lives and to consider how we might grow in confidence in sharing these stories with others.  Download it here.   Download the Stepping Stones diocesan guide to nurture courses here.

Church Councils Foci - a session for church councils to consider how they spend their time (& money) how that reflects the priorities of the church and whether anything needs to change.  Download it here.

Read an introduction to the next six one off sessions specifically focused aroung young people here.

What is Youth Work?  A missional perspective on the principles, practicalities and realities of what it means to reach out young people who live in a very different culture to the one in which we grew up.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying PowerPoint here.  Download the 'When I was a child' accompanying file here.

Outside In: Youth Clubs, Drop in’s, Detached work (and all that Jazz) - Starting from scratch or running already this is a guide to the how, why, what, when and who of working with young people in specific settings.  Download it here.

Inside Out: Running small groups with Young People - When a youth club is not enough and a bible study group is not hitting the mark, some ideas and thoughts on how to engage young people on their discipleship journey (participation is the key).  Download it here.  Download the accompanying PowerPoint here.

Responding to Challenging Behaviour in Young People - Why do they do that? .. and what can we do about it?  Fear of responding to challenging behaviour can stop our work before we start, or inappropriate responses can make us feel powerless .. Understanding and appropriate responses are the key to successful work with young people who can and will display challenging behaviours.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying PowerPoint here.

Mentoring a Young Person - A practical look at why we would want to do this .. why we should be doing this and how on earth we go about it.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying PowerPoint here.  Download the handout here.

Writing be-spoke material for Young People - Got a group of young people, got willing, able but stretched volunteers? .. don’t know where to go next?  How to prepare sessions relevant to the young people you are working with.  Download it here.

Called?  A session to develop every person’s sense of being called by God, the assumption being that it is not a question of whether we are called but what God might be calling each one of us to, as followers of Jesus.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying PowerPoint here.

A Learning Church – Part I - These three sessions help us to consider how adults develop in faith, and how we learn, so thatthe local Church can become more attuned to the nurturing of disciples. These sessions also introduce two of the main Adult Education / Discipleship courses provided by the School for Ministry (Journey in Faith / Discovery.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying handout here.

Discerning, Vision & Implementation - This is a session to help a group understand a process to discern the future direction. The aim is to give you a start on how to go about it and what order to tackle different topics.  Download it here.

Intentional Evangelism - a session to help Deaneries, Mission Partnerships and Parishes consider what they are engaged in which is most fruitful and intentionally evangelistic and how they might realise God’s call to build on that.  Download it here.  Download the accompanying PowerPoint here.


Part 2: Potential Sessions
In addition to the sessions in part 1, a number of other sessions have been partly prepared over the course of the Diocesan Leadership Programme and for other uses.  Although they are not available instanteously, they could be written up and prepared if there were sufficient demand and notice.  Contact one of the Mission and Ministry team for more information.

Dealing with Difficult People - we all find some people harder to deal with than others. This session explores why we struggle with some people and invites us to find new ways to communicate.

Effective Meetings - we all spend considerable time in meetings but not always profitably. This session suggests ways to make meetings more engaging and effective.

Enabling and equipping others - this session looks at our own experience of being enabled by others and expanding the ways we can enable and equip others to be more effective in their mission and ministry

Getting Others Involved (you don’t have to do it alone) - it’s tempting to work on your own rather than spend time involving others. Based on the book of the same name this session considers why we tend to work solo and suggests a process to successfully involve others in projects.

Motivation - what motivates each of us? There are different underlying motivations and knowing this might help us work more effectively as teams. How do we remain motivated as a church and what might sustain us?

Power and influence - all human organisations are made up of interconnected relationships. Power is the glue in those relationships. What are the helpful ways to understand how power and influence may work in our churches?

Why people leave and how we can help them stay - a session thinking about why people leave churches, what signs to look out for and opportunity for the church to consider how we respond missionally.

Working with Volunteers - there are various challenges to identifying, recruiting, equipping and enabling the flourishing of volunteers in our work – what examples of good practice and policy are out there for us to learn from as we seek to find, motivate and develop volunteers?

A Learning Church Part II - 80% of learning takes place informally.  20% of learning takes place formally. Sermons come into the second category.  This session will help a community to think about how they can engage and harness the 80% of learning, will look at mapping the learning throughout a community, and explore how we can find and resource the 'Wells'.

For Church Council Secretaries - a one off session for PCC or DCC (Church Council) secretaries, covering the requirements and possibilities for the secretary and the Parish. Practical advice, designed to help you make the most of the role.

More, Bigger, Faster - rules of life tend to often be thought of in terms of the more meditative and prayeful aspects of work, but interesting and maybe even a little prophetic how within the business world the same kind of terminology is gaining traction as a way of developing productivity as well as satisfaction and energy (to use their language).  How do we overcome the ethic of more, bigger, faster by crafting a rule of life which helps us be all we are called to be, without being driven in a way which exacts a bigger and bigger toll?


Part 3: Courses
In addition to the one off sessions, there are also a wide range of longer courses, of varying lengths, available to borrow from, or run in collaboration with, the Mission and Ministry Team.  Contact the Mission and Ministry Team for more.

In addition to the following, the Mission and Ministry Team also have a number of evangelism, faith sharing training, and nurture courses available to borrow - for a full list of these see the Stepping Stones guide here.

Preaching and Communication - 1 week, 2 month practical, 2 week return visits: this course introduces ways of preaching and communicating more effectively, in the local Church context. Sermons are evaluated and feedback given. Ideas for improvement are developed. Ideal for Preaching teams.

Befriending the Bereaved - 5 weeks: An introduction to Pastoral Care to those who are bereaved. Ideally for existing Pastoral Care teams, delivered in conjunction with a Pastoral Assistant.  Developed by the Bishop's Healing and Wholeness Advisor (Brian Davis).

Wholeness and Healing - Two courses, Part 1 and Part 2, six sessions each: part 1 – introduction to Wholeness and Healing Ministry for all. part 2 specifically designed for those looking at developing a Wholeness and Healing team.

Unfamiliar Journey - 6 weeks: from the St Philips Centre: A course that introduces other faiths within a supportive and enquiring manner. Includes visits to various places of worship.

Everybody Welcome - 4 sessions, usually over four weeks or two Saturday morning’s: a course to be reminded what it is like being a new person in your church, what helps people to stay and what makes that harder.  Sessions on raising your church profile, improving the buildings, developing a welcoming people and enabling newcomers to participate fully.  Written by Bob Jackson and George Fisher.

Science and Religion - 5 weeks: a course from the Faraday Institute on faith and science.

Growing Leaders - 1 year (one session a month): the Growing Leaders course focuses on developing leaders across the life of the church, and provides practical resources for running a leadership development process over a year.  From CPAS.

Growing Young Leaders - 1 year (one session a month): a special version of the Growing Leaders course tailored towards young people.  From CPAS.

Worship4Today - 1 year (one session a month): developing and nurturing local worship leaders and worship groups. The Worship4Today course looks at the practicalities of worship leading, and seeks to develop leaders and worship teams. Includes practical sessions for musical development, as well as increasing skills in the areas of liturgy and worship creation.

Mentoring Matters - 4 sessions with practical work in between: an easy-to-use pack with everything you need to start a church-based mentoring network: identifying, equipping and resourcing mentors.  From CPAS.

Building a Relational Church - introductory session, questionnaire distribution and collation, and follow up discussion: an off-the-peg, free of charge, resource from the Jubilee Centre Offers an assessment of relationships within your church, using an anonymous questionnaire asking about people’s experience of, and expectations for, their relationships with others in the church. Collated responses provide for assessment and discussion-starters around relationships within the church, and can give practical ways of encouraging relationships to flourish.  These sessions could be further developed locally using another free tool, Social Network Analysis, which plots the flows of information and influence within a worshipping community.

Worship Leaders Course (Gloucester) - 6 sessions: this  course is designed to equip and improve those who lead (or who expect to lead) worship services within an established liturgical frame. Delivered in conjunction with the Diocesan Liturgical Committee.

In His Name - 8 week course: an introductory training course for healing prayer teams produced by ReSource's staff members Alison Morgan and John Woolmer. Available direct from ReSource and also to browse from Mission and Ministry.

Love One Another - 6 sessions: an introductory pastoral care course developed by Canon Brian Davis, Advisor for Wholeness and Healing in Leicester Diocese.


And finally, what other help is available?

In addition to the resources within the Mission and Ministry Team, the role of your local Mission Partnership Convenor can not be overstated.  They are there to help you discern the right course, session or resources, link you in with any others exploring the same topic, maybe even offer to co-ordinate an event or a course across a Mission Partnership, and can liaise with the Mission & Ministry team over facilitation and delivery.   Click here to find out which partnership you are in and who the Convenor is.


This material has been developed through conversations and reflections within and by the Mission and Ministry team. It draws on a range of people’s work. ‘The File’ is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 UK: England & Wales License (for more details of what this allows you to do with it go to: Where a specific source has been used every effort has been made to acknowledge such. If you are aware of any omissions please let us know this can be rectified. We have tried to avoid using business-speak or overtly secular ‘coaching’ language, but we know these could be improved and welcome any suggestions of changes.

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  1. Mission and Ministry
  2. Mission Partnerships

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