Annual conference to focus on counter-cultural spirituality and connection

Growing more like Jesus Feb. 1 to 3, 2019

Hesston College will partner with Mark Scandrette, an internationally recognized expert in Christian spirituality, for its annual Anabaptist Vision and Discipleship Series conference February 1 to 3, 2019.

With the theme “Growing more like Jesus from the Outside In: Transforming Heart and Mind,” the conference is formatted to learn from each other, and for communities to speak to life issues that are common in communities everywhere.

“What participants will learn at this year’s conference moves away from the concept of an outside speaker coming in, lecturing and expecting that anything can really change within the community from that approach,” said Hesston College Director of Church Relations, Dallas Stutzman, a member of the planning committee. “Instead, Jesus and the event will call us to change in practical, Kingdom ways. From the outside in.”

“Following Jesus in the 21st century is challenging,” said Clayton Gladish of the planning committee and pastor of Hesston Mennonite Church. “Between social isolation and multiple things vying for our time, we need help finding ways to connect with one another for the purpose of practicing our faith. Mark Scandrette give practical advice based on personal experimentation and experience that helps us to embody the call to make disciples.”

A primary source of guidance for the weekend will be the Ninefold Path of the Beatitudes, which was created by Scandrette. The Ninefold Path is an experiential journey of blessings Jesus presented in the Sermon on the Mount, exploring the radical life-giving invitation they provide, engaging the dynamic of shared experiments and practices, creating space to rest, connect and refresh and coming away with tools and skills to lead others on the journey.

The conference is intended to be accessible to church leaders as well as congregants across all Christian denominations and those exploring their faith and spirituality.

“We recently had a Zoom conference with Mark [Scandrette], who was in the U.K. doing significant work in revitalizing the church there, as well as recent trips to Australia and New Zealand,” said Stutzman. “This event is an outstanding opportunity for all area Christians to develop their faith practice to serve around the world.”

Interested participants are encouraged to plan to attend. Registration for the weekend will be available through Hesston College in mid-December.

Scandrette teaches in the doctoral program at Fuller Theological Seminary (Pasadena, Calif.), and is the founder of ReIMAGINE: A Center for Integral Christian Practice. His recent books include “Practicing the Way of Jesus” and “The Ninefold Path.” Scandrette’s wife, Lisa, will join him in presenting during the weekend as well. A sampling of Scandrette’s presentations can be found online.