Conference Workshops 2018


We are excited to offer 24 different workshop options.  You will have the opportunity to select your two workshops when you check-in at the conference.


  • Session A:  1:30 – 2:45PM

    1a.  Developing a Culture of Family Ministry – Brett Kennedy, Sr. Pastor, Wellsboro, PA Vineyard

    Service and ministry in the local church can often be difficult for those with families.  At times it can seem like you have to choose between the two, but what if you could do both?  Imagine a ministry where spouses serve side-by-side or parents serve with their children.  Creating a culture of family ministry provides everyone–regardless of age– the opportunity to “play.”  This workshop will focus on ideas for cultivating family and inter-generational relationships that will transform the ministry of the local church.

    2a.  Worship and Theology and Culture – Ted Kim, East Region Worship Taskforce Leader and Worship Pastor, Syracuse Vineyard

    What you need to know as a worship person in today’s shifting culture and how it relates to worship and theology. We’ll tackle it as much as we can! 

    3a.  The Nuts & Bolts of Church Planting – Rich Andrews, Sr. Pastor Conshohocken Vineyard and Multiply Vineyard Regional Representative

    If you have any interest in planting a church, this workshop is for you.  Come hear the real life stories including the good and the bad with lessons learned from a few of our recently released Vineyard Church planters at different stages in the church planting process. Find out firsthand what it’s really like to put it all on the line and start a new church from scratch. We’ll talk about best practices, creating a strategy for your context, the biggest challenges, and resources for the road, including time for Q&A.

    4a.  Understanding the Bible as God’s Great Drama – Brittany Kim, Adjust Professor of Old Testament

    Have you ever tried to read the Bible and felt like you were lost in a foreign world or wondered why God commanded the ancient Israelites to sacrifice animals? Or have you ever struggled to figure out how all the different parts of the Bible fit together? This workshop will show you how the Bible is one great drama about God’s purpose for his creation—to establish his kingdom on earth. Gaining a bird’s-eye view of the whole storyline of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation gives us a framework to better understand individual passages and figure out how they apply to us today. So in this workshop, we’ll trace the main contours of the biblical drama and talk about how each of us can find the role God has created us to play in it.

    5a. Sex Trafficking & the Local Church’s Response, Katrina Keefe, Homestead Site Pastor, Lakes Region Vineyard, NH

    “That doesn’t happen here…” is a common response to the topic of child sex trafficking, but it is happening here. Child sex trafficking is happening in the small towns and big cities that make up the North Eastern Region of the United States. The same North Eastern Region our churches are a part of. As the church, we are to be the brightest light pushing back this horrific darkness. Though it can often feel hopeless, there are resources and tools available to equip your church to be the Light. This workshop will provide properly sourced information and offer actions steps any church can take to be a part of ending this form of modern day slavery. 

    6a.  Prospering in the Church as a Millennial – Amanda Ward, Youth Pastor, Syracuse Vineyard

    Are you looking for helpful ways to find community as a millennial? Join us as we discuss ways you can prosper as a millennial within the church. 

    7a.  The Call – Mark Tindall, Area Leader and Sr. Pastor, Blue Route Vineyard, Media, PA

    Many of us long to know the primary assignment of our lives. The Call, by Os Guinness does a great job helping us respond to the biblical concept of calling; pointing out how to think and what to avoid when working out your understanding of God’s plan for your life. Join us for an interactive overview of the one book Mark has recommended more than any others. 

    8a.  How To Make Our Preaching Better – Don Andreson, Area Leader and Sr. Pastor, The Vineyard – A Community Church, Kingston, MA Vineyard

    Good preaching opens up new understanding, imparts new vision, connects God’s Word to real life, and releases the Holy Spirit to change people’s lives.  In this workshop we’ll underline 13 principles that can help us preach more effectively, along with some practical ways of building the “infrastructure” on which effective sermons are built.

    9a.  Adventures in Leading a Vineyard Small Group, Amy Ross, Staff Pastor, Blue Route Vineyard, Media, PA

    I’ve led small groups for most of my adult life – except for the little side trip into atheism in my college years. But even then, I was looking for authentic community and meaning.  Now that I’ve found my “forever home” in the Vineyard, I’ve had quite a wild ride learning to lead small groups that reflect our Vineyard values. How do you teach naturally supernatural prayer? How do you create a group where everyone gets to play?  Can small groups have a kingdom presence in our neighborhoods?  Does your home have to look like an Ikea catalog or a HGTV success story in order to offer hospitality? How do you recruit a core team and launch a group with life on it from week one? How to care for people in crisis? How do you handle conflict in your group? Can you include children in meaningful and safe ways in your group? What makes a good apprentice leader and how do you equip her? How do you do cross-cultural ministry in small groups? 

    10a.  Enneagram Transformation – Joel Hubbard, Sr. Pastor, Vine39, Stoneham, MA

    Our culture is born from the information age but God is inviting us into the transformation age. Discipleship, Spiritual Formation, Marriage Courses, Parenting Classes, Leadership Courses, have helped in some ways and fallen short in others. Unlike the “one size fits all” approach, The Enneagram from a Christian perspective shows us our unique path forward. The Enneagram reveals why we do what we do and gives us a specific path to transformation. Personally, I have never seen so many lives changing in foundational and sustained ways including my own and can’t wait to share this tool with you. 

    11a.  Grow Your church:  Turn First Time Guests into Active Partners – John Elmer, Regional Leader and Gwen Elmer, Connections Pastor, Syracuse Vineyard

    Are you tired of seeing people visit your church but never come back?  Sick of seeing people live on the fringe and not get fully involved? If so, this workshop is for you as we look at creating great guest experiences and building connections.

    Session B:  3 – 4:15PM

    1b. Improving your Church Communication and Web Presence – Gary Dawkins, Discipleship Pastor, Syracuse Vineyard and former Communications Professor

    Is your online presence attracting your ideal audience? Are your communications strategies producing results? Let’s talk about practical steps you can take to improve or begin your church communication and engagement strategy!

    2b. Growing Godly Kids – Michele Davidson, Regional Children’s Ministry Taskforce Leader and Children’s Pastor, Pathway Vineyard

    What does raising a Godly kid mean these days? How do we as a children’s ministry compete with all the different directions our kids’ attention is being pulled? In this workshop, we will explore ideas about how we can partner with parents and, with the short time we are given with their kids each week, make an impact in the kingdom!

    3b. Come Holy Spirit, Blurring the lines Between Worship, Word and Ministry – Dick and Josh Ray, Sr. Pastor and Worship Pastor, Mechanic Falls Vineyard, ME

    One of the Vineyard distinctives is an expectancy for the Holy Spirit to minister in our weekly services. We will explore some simple dynamics that can allow for ministry to occur at any time when we gather and “blur the lines” between Worship, the Word and Ministry.

    4b. Church Safety 101 – Kurt Best, Safety Team Leader, Syracuse Vineyard

    Did you know that statistically only 25% of churches have some sort of safety ministry?  Given recent events, it is becoming more important than ever to develop/equip a team of “watchmen” to protect the people in our churches. Attend this session to receive some tips and tools to help you get a safety team started or take your current safety team to the next level. We will also plan to take a tour of our facility and discuss how it relates to our safety team’s operations and procedures.  Handouts will be provided with information and resources to help you on your path to success! 

    5b. Navigating Christian Journey with Children of Special Needs – Allen Austin, Sr. Pastor, Pathway Vineyard, Lewiston, ME

    Navigating leadership comes with unique challenges for all families, add the unexpected arrival of a child with special needs and those challenges can grow exponentially. Families of children with special needs often require specific schedules and routines, so trying to keep up with the demands of public ministry can be hard, yet, it can be done and done well. We have an adult son with Autism who also struggled with a debilitating autoimmune disease the first 15 years of his life, we quickly learned that pastoring a growing church and navigating family well requires openness, honesty, a support system and an understanding on when to say no.

    6b. The Church in the City: Color, Class, and Culture – Steve Schenk, Sr. Pastor Buffalo Vineyard

    Do you care about justice for poor communities?  Do you long to see reconciliation take root in our churches?  Are you living, working, or worshipping in an urban setting?  In this workshop we will discuss best practices for working to see the Kingdom of God expand in the urban centers of our region.

    7b. I Need More Leaders – Andy Race, Area Leader and Auburn Site Pastor, Syracuse Vineyard

    God has a unique call on your life.  For many of us, that call means we get to lead. But, just because it’s our calling, that doesn’t mean we’re meant to do it alone!  There are hundreds of people within a short drive of my church, who don’t have any idea who Jesus is, or just how much He loves them.  In order to connect with and serve those people, I need more leaders!  Come find out some of what I’ve learned about developing leaders, and join in on the discussion.

    8b. Navigating Conversations in the Gap Between Faith & Our Current Culture – Trish Ryan, Co-Pastor, Greenhouse Mission, Wakefield, MA

    Feeling swamped by our current culture? You’re not alone. Just last month:

    • The owner of my gym responded to the Supreme Court wedding cake decision by posting “Christianity sucks!” on his Facebook page, then insisted I should agree with him.
    • My daughter’s school brought in a hypnotist who told the kids he can make them feel happy all the time if they’ll trust him to control their minds.
    • My niece’s best friend – a teen girl in foster care – asked me if she can go to heaven if she feels like she might be a gay boy. 

    What do we say in these situations?  How do we live as happy Christians who love our faith in the midst of so much turmoil? If you’re looking for a way to speak Truth without wrecking your relationships, come join us. I think Jesus has Good News.

    9b. God what are You doing in my Life? Help!  Chris Goral, Spiritual Director, Syracuse Vineyard

    Life can be like a whirlwind as I go from one thing to another. I can read my Bible, pray along the way, go to church and small group. Then from deep inside comes this yelp “Father where are You? What are You doing?”  Let’s talk about looking at the invitation God is sending us through this deep felt cry. 

    10b: So You’re Thinking of Going Multi-Site? – Kyle Gabri, Brunswick Site Pastor, Pathway Vineyard, ME

    If you are thinking about using multisite to reach more people within your communities, join us for this workshop. Pathway Vineyard has experience doing multisite for nine years; we would love to help others strategize and start up successful sites.