Without your support, many church and ministry leaders would not have received the restorative strategies and resources they were searching for following devastating events this year. ICTG's mission is to provide leaders with restorative strategies for personal and group growth after collective loss. Check out what you – whether as a donor, volunteer, staff member, or client – helped make possible this year:
Throughout the year, church and ministry leaders sought our services following incidents of leader betrayla, abuse, sudden death, burn out, depression, and other significant individual or family circumstances affecting ministry life. With your support we provided helpful coaching and therapeutic services that leaders found "transformational" and "exactly what we were looking for."
Each week, field experts from around the country provided practical tips and education for ordained and lay leaders to respond to crises, trauma, and disaster in healthy, trauma-informed ways that expand care in their communities. Keep a look out for our top 2017 blog list coming next week!
Early in 2017, Rev. Dr. Kate Wiebe provided keynote sessions for Hesston College's annual AntiBaptist Vision & Discipleship Series conference. This year's theme focused on "When the Unthinkable Happens." Conference coordinators contacted ICTG after their small community experienced a mass shooting in 2016 at the local Excel Industries corporation.
How does a community make sense of this kind of atrocity? When conference coordinators called Wiebe they made clear they were hopeful for the focus of the conference to be on practical steps congregation members and leaders can take to expand care in their community.
Using ICTG materials, Wiebe provided two presentations and a closing sermon.
You can view the closing sermon here. Here's what one participant had to say:
"Rev. Dr. Wiebe did not disappoint [in providing practical tools for responding to trauma]. Her outlines served as springboards for discussion as audience members were encouraged to share about personal experiences with trauma with those around them. She also encouraged participants to remember trauma and healing are like beauty – they are in the eye of the beholder."
Trauma and Congregations
Throughout the year, Rev. Dr. Kate Wiebe has served as an ICTG advisor for the tragedyandcongregations.org.uk project, as they work to develop training and resources for Church of England ordinands to respond to collective trauma events in their communities.
Around this same time ICTG's spring intern, Westmont College senior Libby Baker, was hard at work conducting a case study of the role faith played as a resource for first responders, administrators, and teachers in response to a Santa Barbara elementary school that had experienced two family murders within a year, as well as what other resources were most helpful to leaders. Her summary, "Community Care after Collective Trauma at an Elementary School," is provided as part of resources offered to annual subscribers. Become an annual subscriber by registering here. You can also find a tip sheet Ms. Baker produced for educators here.
Learn more about ICTG internships here.
This year, we provided training events for Santa Barbara region youth ministers as well as Young Life youth leaders meeting in San Diego and coming from around the country. All of these training events made use of ICTG training materials, which can be purchased a la carte or have included with an annual subscription.
ICTG's Kate Wiebe, Doug Ranck, Harvey Howell, and board members Bruce Wismer, John Tucker, and Mort Ward, all actively responded to communities impacted by hurricanes and wildfire in Puerto Rico, Florida, Texas, and California.
Their responses included:
- Leading a field team to Puerto Rico, helping Free Methodist congregations there connect with NVOAD partners, assess damage, and provide education
- Connecting Team Rubicon and Red Cross partners connect with local congregation volunteers and leaders
- Establishing a long-term recovery committee in Texas and providing long-term emotional and spiritual care training for leaders in Texas
- Helping connect faith and community leaders following Sonoma Fire
- Leading Red Cross' Disaster Spiritual Chaplaincy response to the Thomas Fire
- Providing debriefing and counsel to faith and community leaders and first responders following Thomas Fire
The contributions of every ICTG donor, volunteer, and staff member. Thank you for all the good you add into the world after so much devastation. Your money, time, prayer, and skills create ripple effects of care that restore individuals, families, and communities.
There will not be a lack of need in 2018, and together we can keep making a great difference!