As you’ve probably read, a team of us have hosted two Epic Fail Pastor Conferences.
A few months ago we announced an exciting shift in our approach to these counter-intuitive conferences: we’ve decided to decentralize the Epic Fail Pastors Conference to accomodate pastors by making these events more accessible and available.
One of the things we realized is as beneficial as a centralized yearly conference on failure for pastors can be, it actually keeps many pastors from attending, especially those who need to be at the event the most. Instead of a “you come to us” approach we’ve structured events to have a “we come to you” approach. We, in a sense, are taking Epic Fail Pastors Events on the road.
Several pastors contacted us leading up to EFPC 2012, saying they deeply desired to attend, but with a minimal – or non-existent – ministry budget, financially they just couldn’t make it work. Yes, $89 for a conference was incredibly reasonable, but by the time they totaled up a flight, hotel room for a few nights, meals, rental car and gas, even if we offered the conference for free, they told us, it was still cost prohibitive.
We sense that there are numerous regions around the country where pockets of pastors feel like failures. This makes sense financially as well as relationally.
- Financially, our Epic Fail Pastors events team would come to you in your region, thus bringing the cost down significantly for each individual pastor who attends. If they live in the region, it eliminates the cost of a flight, rental car and a few nights in a hotel. This is crucial, as most pastors who are interested in Epic Fail do not have the luxury of having access to a large mega-church ministry conference budget to work with.
- Relationally, pastors who live in the region either (a) already know each other or (b) have the opportunity to connect rather easily after the event is over. With such courageous vulnerability and healing at the event, we sense there is a powerful bond that could be build long after the event is finished. We desire to see bonds and friendships developed among pastors within their region that goes well beyond the walls of their own church and things more in terms of relationships across the city/region.
We’ve developed the Epic Fail Pastors Events in various formats in order to provide different expressions of Epic Fail that may address the particular context of that region. There are three specific expressions we’re offering:
 Epic Fail Pastors One Day: a one-day event where I come to facilitate and lead the day in your particular region.
 Epic Fail Pastors Roundtable: a evening and one full day event where myself and our Epic Fail Pastors events director facilitate, host and lead the event. We’ve already hosted an Epic Fail Pastors Roundtable in Colorado Springs this pasto spring that was one of our best events. We are in serious talks with a similar event in the Cincinnati area this fall.
 Epic Fail Pastors Conference: a three-day event where our Epic Fail Pastors planning team is present to facilitate, host and lead the event in greater depth.
We’ve shared this idea with pockets of people and thus far we have received a lot of exciting feedback with this change. Our planning team has worked long and hard to work through all of the details and logistics of these three expressions of events, as well as capture exactly what is required for a regional event to occur.
But here’s how this works moving forward: This new vision only works if a leader or pastor who wants to see an Epic Fail Pastors event in their particular region of the country steps up and contacts us.
We’re convinced there are too many pastors in too many regions of the country struggling with their own failures and desperately in need of safe spaces to process failure, pain, hurt and shame in light of the grace of Jesus and the hope-filled power of the gospel.
We’d love to hear from you and talk about bringing this idea to your community.
If you’re interested in knowing more – or have questions – we’re ready to move forward on these plans and would love to talk to you about an Epic Fail Event in your neck of the woods.
If interested, contact Epic Fail Pastors Events Director Jason Sheffield at email@example.com or you can contact us through the website.