As we launch into a New Year, I think it would be helpful to give a brief overview of the direction our congregation has taken to address specific needs and challenges identified by our elected leaders and appointed staff. We are:
– Fostering new lay leadership for fresh ideas, innovation and approaches to accomplishing our primary mission. (6 new chairpersons out of 11, new on 2018 Council)
– Accommodating a greater breadth of opinion/views while pursuing our primary religious focus. (Our own newsletter story mix reveals a more “progressive” face.)
– We have changed MV’s “constellation of programming” to improve visibility, connection and affinity of “Nones” (NO religious affiliation) with our sacred community.
– Stretching to provide two full-time, fully-credentialed clergy to enhance the theological and practical BREADTH and DEPTH of this ministry. (Pastor Sarah to become fully credentialed in May 2018)
– Enhancing direct contact with clergy and more complete Pastoral coverage of the needs of the congregation and community. (sharing the pulpit frees each clergy person to engage in Sunday School and other activities in the broader community)
– Renewing efforts to integrate visitors quickly, esp. young families and new residents (including FMRC). (Numerical growth at MV is a key element to our spiritual and financial success in 2018, and is the responsibility of every member of the congregation)
– Maintaining truthful, transparent, and trustworthy financial practices aimed at garnering the full support of MV’s goals expressed through our institutional budgets. (Reliable reports and trustworthy record-keeping allows MV leaders to spend time on Outreach over internal management of details.)
Conscientious administration of time and talent, accountability and management, resulting in minimal friction with staff in performing the primary mission of ministry. (Finding and KEEPING good people is a challenge for the church at any time, and harder still because of the cost of living in our region.)
– Implementing prudent safety and security, building and facilities improvements to deal with potential risks and hazards. (Necessary maintenance and upkeep of our 50+ year old facility; including but not limited to Safety Team recommendations and procedures, upgrading technology and Electronic/trackable door locks.
Integrating new members and friends into MV ministries to add fulfillment and function for them and the church. (Our future is in providing well grounded, Christ-centered support to people who are “doing” life. When they come here to worship God, they are seeking human/divine contact. We must be ready to invite them in: Pray ground, Choir recruitment, engaging preaching, vital mission, service, and fellowship activities.)
What are additional ways we can fulfill our primary religious mission, “to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world?”