How I Became a Newbigin Fellowship Cohort Leader

In a blink the Newbigin Fellowship and I have a history, I didn’t plan it this way. I was a fellow in the 2011-2012 program, with a sister church in Sacramento. I approached the Fellowship with desire but also hesitancy and found myself encouraged. So, with what seemed like a mountain before me I sent in the application trusting that time and money would work out. My time as a fellow brought out all of my emotions. I found myself stretched and comforted, angry and joyful, I cried and laughed, often weekly. I found myself leaving our cohort meetings thinking (and often audibly saying) “I’d really love if we could do this at Christ Church [Davis] (CCD).”

When the NF came to an end I was ready, but I was also eager to help in anyway that I could, to bring this program to CCD. I suppose I never really sat and weighed the options of participating as a leader for the 2012-2013 cohort; I prayed, I felt good about it and it happened. It was a stellar year and of course, once you do the NF, you want with all your might to keep it going. So, here I am co-leading the 2013-2014 cohort. As we wrapped up last year a very small group of us met to discuss the most succinct way to present this to our community and at some point we came up with this: During your time with the Newbigin Fellowship you will wrestle with yourself and you will wrestle with God but the beauty of it is, you will wrestle in community. We are very early into the year and this is already happening, a mixture of wrestling and discovery. It’s quite amazing. The amount of intellectual and emotional vulnerability that is laid out on the table each week is remarkable. This thing called community is so good; to do what we do in the NF community is a gift and I’m thrilled to say that we have a history with one another.

Shannon Stevens

Christ Church Davis

2011-2012 Fellow