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Activity time: 10 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Newsprint, markers and tape

Preparation for Activity

  • Prepare newsprint by writing this definition:

An "adaptive challenge" is one which requires developing the organizational, cultural, and spiritual capacity to meet problems successfully according to our values and purposes. It often requires clarification and integration of competing values.

Description of Activity

Introduce the concept of "adaptive challenge" to the group. Post the prepared newsprint and read the definition to the group. Tell them this definition comes from the work of Ron Heifitz, director of the Leadership Education Project at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. Read the definition a second time, underlining the words "developing," "capacity," "meet problems," and "values."

Invite participants to suggest some adaptive challenges faced by our society. What are events or issues that could lead to a turning point in how we proceed as a society?

After they have considered some of society's adaptive challenges, invite them to name some of the adaptive challenges facing their congregation. What are some challenges that require our congregation to develop some new organizational, cultural or spiritual capacities? What events or issues could lead to a turning point or moment of grace in how we proceed as a congregation?

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