The aim of the courses is to help each of us to understand ourselves better. The material will help to foster new perspectives on ourselves and our relationships and the ability to relate better to the people who matter in our lives.
There are currently four different courses - or 'Steps'. Each 'Step' builds on the previous step and they should, therefore, be followed through in order. For details of each 'Step' please see below. The Understanding How to Help course builds on the principles taught in Steps One to Four and offers valuable insights into some of the underlying causes of mental and emotional health concerns and knowledge that will enable you to give valuable support to others.
The courses have been run as residential teaching weekends over several years. There are no dates currently planned for future courses. However details of each course and the accompanying notes are available by clicking the pictures below.
On Step One we discover our combination of temperaments, how our two main temperaments interact within us and the significance of that interaction. We look at how our past has helped to shape who we are today and how our identity is formed - plus many more fascinating insights. Click the picture of Southwold Pier for further details of Step One.
Step Two gives an opportunity to explore in depth the understanding and application of the material covered in Step One as well as sharing new insights, including how to become truly objective. It gives the opportunity to explore the power of how we feel about ourselves and how to properly value ourselves and others. Click the picture of Woodbridge for further details of Step Two.
This course builds on the first two but demonstrates how to use what we have learnt to make a real difference in the lives of others. Click the picture of Thorpeness for further details. Testimonial: "A really worthwhile course that follows on wonderfully from the first two. It gave an opportunity to put into practice and see working examples of the benefits of understanding not only ourselves but the processes that go on in others."
The purpose of this course is to provide an understanding of some of the underlying causes of mental and emotional health concerns and equip you with the knowledge that will enable you to give valuable support to others. It is important to have an understanding of the Steps One to Four material before undertaking this course. Click the picture of Southwold harbour for more details.
Who has written these courses?
John Sparkes has been in Christian ministry for over forty years. John attended Bible College at Berwick-on-Tweed, where he met his wife Merle. They married in 1973 and moved to Suffolk to work as evangelists, initially with Counties Evangelistic Work, and founded Halesworth Community Church in 1975. During his ministry John has been involved in many aspects of church life but has always had a desire to help people to understand themselves and to equip them to build meaningful relationships.
He has counselled hundreds of people over the years and developed courses that provide help with and insights into the practical challenges that people face in everyday life. John has been active in his local community as Chair of Governors of a local school and as a magistrate. He and Merle have six children, four boys and two girls, and eight grandchildren.
The story of the courses - John has written a brief account of how the courses came into being and have developed over the years. Click here to read.
These are a few of the many testimonials from people who have attended the courses: "The course explained the reasons why I feel like I do." "A great help in developing my understanding of myself and others." "An incredible valuable experience." "The best and most practical Christian course I've ever been on ... when we understand temperaments and can see God's vision and created purpose for them it transforms the way we think about ourselves in a real and practical way."