Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The news is the cluster newsletter!

The last couple of years have seen the growth of an exciting new medium of communication and learning:  cluster-level newsletters.  We are always happy to see issues of these newsletters, and we recently received a VERY exciting example, that of San Francisco-San Mateo, CA (A).  It was full of data and tables, showing the number of core activities from cycle to cycle of that cluster’s intensive program of growth, as well as numbers of people who have completed the various training institute courses.  Want to know who’s on the area teaching committee or need to contact your cluster institute coordinator?—Their contact information is clearly listed right there!  So the newsletter becomes a means to facilitate learning and participation.  Here is an excerpt of one of the newsletter’s articles
Dear Friends in Cluster CA-NC 09,
We are now in the 16th cycle of our intensive program of Growth. The current cycle was launched with a cluster-wide picnic and barbecue held at the Martin Luther King Jr. Center in San Mateo, followed by our quarterly Cluster Reflection Meeting.  Approximately 50 people attended the barbecue and picnic and the Reflection Meeting.  Just prior to the Reflection Meeting, theBahá’í world received the Ridván Letter from the Universal House of Justice. . . .

What a special Ridván Letter it is!  The letter is filled with love, guidance, and encouragement.  In addition, we were all congratulated for accomplishing the goal of creating 1500 intensive programs of growth one year prior to the end of the Five Year Plan.
Throughout this year, the final year of the current Five Year Plan, we are all encouraged to read and study the letter individually and in groups as much as possible.
Throughout this newsletter you will find several passages from the Writings of the Faith, selected portions of the Ridván letter, relevant information on our current cycle of growth, cluster statistics, important dates, teaching stories, and contact information for the Area Teaching Committee and Cluster Institute Coordinators.
Please know that the Area Teaching Committee and Cluster Institute Coordinators are here to serve you.  If you have any questions regarding teaching activities going on throughout the cluster or would like to start or be involved in any one of the core activities you are welcome to contact any of the persons listed below.
With Love,
Your Area Teaching Committee
The newsletter also gives a summary of the goals from the last reflection meeting:
26 regular home visits
1 new fireside
2 new study circles
2 new devotional meetings
2 children’s classes
Expand the community of interest by 27
Teaching teams have also pledged to strengthen and deepen friendships and relationships with their community of interest by hosting social activities such as picnics and barbecues, a housewarming and tea time.  The current teams include:
East Palo Alto
San Mateo
Western Addition
Team Biosphere

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