When the institutions work together, progress in the cluster is a natural result. What is so interesting in this report from Las Cruces, NM (*C), is how sustained commitment is creating a close working relationship between core team members and the Local Spiritual Assembly. It is one of several things being done to help encourage more and more of the friends to arise and serve.
Actively engaging the Local Spiritual Assembly in the plans and actions of the cluster is vital. By meeting with the Assembly recently we have enlisted its support for the Reflection Meetings. The Assembly has asked to meet with the cluster institute coordinators for at least 20 minutes at every Assembly meeting (which is held every 19 days). In just a few weeks this support from the Local Assembly has encouraged more activity. We also informed the Assembly of our projected Reflection Meeting dates for the entire year. . . .
Outside encouragement is vital to this community. Having speakers on the Regional Bahá’í Conference recap the highlights and walk us through the planning sessions helped everyone understand where we were and where we needed to be. This format will be used for our next Reflection Meeting as well.
We have found that setting a goal of 100% participation in at least some aspect of the core activities is helping some folks see what is possible with the institute process. Patience with the process and striving towards having more individuals completing the sequence of courses is working well in our cluster.