Mentorship is the most important job in Chrysalis
Good Mentorship is vital to the integrity of Chrysalis. Many communities take Mentorship for granted; they assume that everyone knows the how and why of Mentorship.
It is more than just “signing up people”. The quality of Mentorship influences the butterfly, the health of the Chrysalis Movement, and the church affected by the movement.
First, good Mentorship is your first act of agape before a Flight ever begins; the experience of the Flight for a butterfly really starts with how we handle Mentorship.
Second, good Mentorship undergirds the whole weekend with sacrificial love on behalf of each butterfly. Mentors use discernment in recruiting butterflys, embody the personal commitment of the community to each butterfly, and provide personal acts of agape during the three days for the butterflys. These acts of agape include the Mentor’s personal preparations for the weekend, presence at Send off, Candlelight and Closing, follow-up after the weekend, and prayer during the entire process.
Third, good Mentorship is the foundation for a healthy, effective Chrysalis movement that is fulfilling its true purpose – the development of Christian leaders and the renewal of the church in ministry. The strength of any Chrysalis community is a direct result of its recruiting practices. If the community is committed to recruiting strong church leaders for the purpose of strengthening the local church, then the community will be a strong, vital force in the renewal movement. If, on the other hand, the Flight to Chrysalis is looked upon as a hospital where every human ill can be cured, it will have a weakening effect on the entire community.
WHY DO WE Mentor?
The aim of a Mentor should not be to “get all my friends to go”, to fill up the weekend, to fix people’s problems, or to reproduce one’s own religious experience in others. Rather, the aim of the Mentor is to bring spiritual revitalization to Christians who, in turn, will bring new life and vision to the work of the church in the congregation, home, workplace, and community. The aim of Mentorship is to build up the Body of Christ.
WHOM DO WE Mentor?
One’s awareness of and commitment to the purpose of Chrysalis influences who is Mentored and how they are Mentored. Chrysalis is for active Christians and members of churches whose own renewal will mean new energy, commitment, and vision in the church and everyday environments for Christ’s sake. There are several qualities a prospective butterfly should possess.
First, the person should already be in a tranformation, willing to grow and move forward in their journey of faith.
Second, the person should have a Christian passion. The butterfly knows God can make and has made a difference in their life.
Third, the person isn’t so consumed by life’s circumstances that they are unable to give full attention to the message and experience of Chrysalis.
Those Mentored could include the following:
- church leaders (pastors and laypersons) who will bring new vision, commitment, and understanding back to their congregations and who need the renewal and grace Chrysalis channels;
- dependable church members who are the quiet backbone of the church;
- less active members who need their awareness of grace rekindled and their commitments renewed;
- Christians who are hungry for “something more” and who want to grow spiritually;
- Respected laypersons and clergypersons whose participation, support, and leadership will encourage others to attend the Flight and will build a sound, balanced leadership base for the movement in the community; and
- members of diverse congregations, denominations, and ethnic groups.
Chrysalis is right for many people – but not for everyone. The religious background or emotional condition of some people may make Chrysalis an improper discipleship tool for them. Others may be unsuitable for Mentorship because of the negative effect they might have on an Chrysalis weekend or the divisive influence they might bring to the church. Mentorship requires sensitivity to these factors.
Some examples of questionable Mentorship are as follows:
- Christians whose theology and/or practice is notably different or incompatible with the traditional theology and practice represented by The Flight to Chrysalis;
- persons undergoing an emotional crisis (for example, family breakup, job loss, severe grief) or who are psychologically unstable;
- “church-hoppers” – those who always have an axe to grind against the church; persons who will use Chrysalis as a tool to divide the body, to further their own theological agendas, or who will create an “Chrysalis church”
- persons who are always looking for another spiritual high or another experience to help them “arrive”.
- persons who decide not to attend a Flight after being presented the opportunity. A potential Mentor need not feel like a failure if a prospect says no. Perhaps the timing is not right. Perhaps God will renew the person in another way. Remember, The Flight to Chrysalis is not the way to renewal for every Christian.
WHAT SHOULD I TELL MY BUTTERFLY?
While a butterfly may not know what questions to ask, you do not need to tell them everything that will occur during the three days. However, keep in mind there are no secrets! Saying to a butterfly that you can’t tell them anything about the Flight potentially creates unnecessary suspicion and anxiety. And for clergy and staff leadership, this posture often builds a wall of division that results in an “us vs. them” mentality against the Chrysalis community. There is no reason to shroud the event in secrecy. This practice has probably done more harm to the movement than people realize. You can share many things about Chrysalis without revealing some of the unique and meaningful experiences. Here are some suggested items to cover with a butterfly.
- There are fifteen presentations (five each day) dealing with subjects like setting priorities, serving God in everyday situations, how to be a disciple, and how to persevere in faith. Encourage note taking.
- There is time spent in discussing these presentations.
- Time is spent in the chapel meditating and praying.
- Communion is emphasized.
- There is plenty of good food and fellowship.
- Discuss sleeping and showering arrangements with your butterfly. A list of suggested items to bring is included with the butterfly’s assignment letter.
- Tell how each weekend is unique, but each person seems to find exactly what God wants that person to experience. Don’t try to prejudge what a person’s needs are or what someone will get out of the Flight to Chrysalis. Simply tell your own story. There are no expected results other than experiencing God’s love.
WHO CAN Mentor?
Any persons who have participated in Chrysalis can Mentor another person to Chrysalis so long as they understand the aim and responsibilities of Mentorship and can fulfill them for the person they would Mentor. Persons who have participated in Chrysalis can also Mentor adults to Chrysalis under the same conditions.
Mentors should not serve as team members on Flights with persons they are Mentoring. If you decide to serve on the team, you should find another person to serve as Mentor. Mentors must be able to fulfill the responsibilities of Mentorship as a priority over serving on the team. Combining the roles of team member and Mentor in one’s relationship with a butterfly diminishes the value of both roles.
HOW DO WE Mentor?
- Pray for the person’s openness to God’s call to discipleship, not for how to get him or her to go on a Flight.
- Extend an invitation. Invite the person to attend for the sake of a more vital relationship with Jesus Christ, not just an event to go to. Share your faith; explain the basic elements of the Flight, its purpose, and follow-up dimensions, which help us live in grace for the rest of our lives. Take the attitude that you are offering the person a wonderful gift rather than that they need to go.
- Ask the person to make a commitment by filling out the registration form. All parts of the application must be completed and signed.
- Continue to pray for your prospective butterfly. Once the butterfly has been assigned to a Flight, begin your preparations and enlist the support of their pastor. Please make sure that all preparations for your butterfly’s weekend are properly taken care of. Be sure you understand what forms of agape are appropriate for the weekend.
- Support the Flight through your participation in the 72-Hour Prayer Vigil and your presence at Sendoff, Candlelight and Closing. Support the butterfly’s family by house-sitting, baby-sitting, feeding pets, watering plants, or just checking in with a spouse to see if any help is needed. For this reason it is best not to Mentor more than one butterfly or couple at a time.
- Encourage the butterfly in his or her Fourth Day involvement. Talk to them about their weekend experience. Help the butterfly find or start a reunion group. Take the butterfly to the first Gathering after their Flight. You could even offer to baby-sit so your butterfly can attend a Candlelight.
- Help the butterfly re-enter their church and consider ways to act out new commitment and enthusiasm.
- Inform the butterfly about ways to serve the Chrysalis community on future Flights, creating agape and writing letters to other butterflys.
- Help the butterfly understand how to Mentor others.