Walking the Emmaus road : a paradigm for interim ministry using accompaniment and participatory methodologies
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As a Specialized Interim Minister (SIM) I walked with a congregation in transition using a model of accompaniment based on the Emmaus Road story (Luke 24:13-35). To help the congregation tell their individual and collective stories, to come to terms with the past, and to open up space for discovery, healing, and change, I drew upon a variety of embodied, participatory methodologies. My project provides examples and explores the effectiveness of the participatory methodologies used in the areas of worship, with the leaders, in symplaysiums, and through the congregation's project of building and walking a labyrinth.
Action research formed the basis of the doctor in ministry project as I accompanied the congregation as both a participant and reflective observer. Six months following the conclusion of the interim period, I returned to collect data from the congregation through a questionnaire and individual interviews. The responses and my analysis seek to answer the question: Did the participatory methodologies used in worship, with leaders, in the symplaysiums, and in building the labyrinth open up space for discovery, healing, and change at Haven Shores Community Church?