Meeting 8: Ministry Setting and Finances

Twelve of us met for this final Visioning Task Force gathering. In spite of the title, we dispensed with nuts and bolts (we had already conducted a financial health audit) and spent our time together in conversation about giving thanks to God for this journey together and seeking the Spirit’s guidance for continuing the journey as a congregation.

Thanksgivings for the Process

  • Ann Spence – enjoyed mixing with other congregation members
  • Dorothy Shelton  – thought we were about visiting; enjoyed being more a part of the family (wedding was wonderful, didn’t want it to end). How to get word out more? So that people can be aware of upcoming events.
  • Dee Waud – interesting to see what is possible for this church (need to start building enthusiasm for this Vision in the congregation). One of the things that kills a lot of churches: “we tried that once and it didn’t work”. Program of shepherding, checking in with people who may have missed church. Member care. I visited the two people in my neighborhood. Important that we don’t forget people.
  • Tom Cahall – I believe the four partnerships need a mentor for each one of them. Maybe lessen the regular committees and focus on these partnerships. Mentioned preschool picking up other preschool for a field trip. You have to have someone who is thinking outside the box about how we can share Christ in a neat and unusual way. Simpson Center is very important to me. Now that it’s done, what can we do to make it a success. I think God led us to those four partnerships – now God expects us to take responsibility for them. The shepherding ministry does work. If I missed several AA mtgs, my phone would light up.
  • Becky Caswell-Wade – you feel like you’re doing a whole lot – and when we talk about it, it puts perspective that reveals we aren’t doing as much as can do more.
  • Kris Knarr – we are ready; we’ve healed. We can’t heal any more. We’ve got to get on with life and help other people. Instead of scratching the scabs off.
  • Margaret Cahall – agree with Ann. If you involve yourself in other groups, you get to know people in a way you could never know if you simply come to church.
  • Drew Boyce, Tim Stark, Jane Griesa, and Jane Maroon were also present.

What’s next?

  • Need to set up intentional structure for follow-up
  • Reevaluation of the meetings, leaders, and structures we have
  • Change brings excitement, and fear. There has to be real value demonstrated/shown to members and friends of our congregation.
  • Passion is something that when one person has it, others can be attracted to it. It’s a word that translates into movement (we have not moved lately). We used to have 35-40 people participate in the food distribution meeting. They miss it – for themselves. Serving others outside makes us closer on the inside. Serving others gives us a reason to be. Ties us closer to each other.
  • The same crowd shows up to the the amen corner at the CRHS games. It’s not about the game, but the fellowship. Ruthann is the rock of that – it’s her passion. It’s not an official church thing. When people leave the church, they’re not leaving the family. We need to establish that connection.
  • We’re trying to become a more focused congregation.
  • One person (matchmaker) can make a huge difference in the church. Getting people connected with others.
  • Finding out what the needs are in the community are and what our strengths are.
  • There was a time when the church was more important than the government.
  • How cool would it be to have Pat Dyer get a bunch of us together and go over our history.
  • We have a lot of resources in our church – Jackie Onwu is a missionary who takes young missionaries under her wing
  • We probably have people who know more about the community than some of our leaders do
  • While Tom was in the hospital, he heard a men’s group singing in the hospital – could our music groups do the same?
  • Dee remembers a group that went once a month to a group home
  • We have four garden plots that could grow veggies for members of the community
  • Inculturating outreach into every group
  • Should we meet again? (Dee)
  • If we are focusing on all four partnerships, there needs to be a script, plan for each area.
  • The congregation must be given an opportunity to buy into this vision and mission
  • Voting with our feet
  • Each of us thinks of 10 people to personally invite to the Church Conference (not just our friends, but the outliers, too)
  • We’ve all got a purpose
  • Invite people to vote with their feet to be a part of steering committees for each partnership