Easter At Creekwood
Church Conference This Sunday
April 16, 12:00 pm – Room 110
Join us for this important vote on how our church leadership and decision making will be structured. Just so it’s stated one more time, this is not a vote regarding anything having to do with the disaffiliation conversations happening in other current or former United Methodist Churches. This is a proposal by Church Council and an Exploratory Team to adopt a more streamlined leadership structure as exemplified in the organizational chart below.
Below the org chart is a series of Frequently Asked Questions we’ve been asked.
1) Who Can Vote at the Church Conference?
The vote is open to all full, professing members. This includes anyone who has joined the church through confirmation, profession of faith, transfer of membership, or reaffirmation of faith. If you are unaware of your membership status, please feel free to ask Pastor David. If you’d like to explore joining the church officially, also contact Pastor David or RSVP for the Welcome Lunch on April 23.
2) What Are We Voting On?
We will first vote to approve the switch to the Leadership Board Model. We will then vote on the nominations to serve on Lay Discipleship Team. Third, we will vote on the nominations from Lay Discipleship for the Leadership Board.
3) How Many People Will Serve on Lay Discipleship Team and The Leadership Board?
Lay Discipleship Team will hover around 9 people, but may include up to 12. The responsibility of this team is two-fold. First, this team will identify, equip, and nominate potential leadership to the church to ratify with a vote at our annual Charge Conference (typically held in the fall). Secondly, this team will be focusing on welcoming, hospitality, and member assimilation – ranging from new persons to helping promote unity, relationships, and joy amongst the existing regulars of Creekwood UMC. Lay Discipleship leaders serve a 3 year term before rolling off.
The Leadership Board will be 9 lay persons that serve a 3 year term and 3 staff persons consisting of the Senior Pastor, the Executive Pastor Family and Mission Ministries, and the Business Administrator. The 9 lay persons will all have authority over matters pertaining to the former SPR, Trustees, and Finance teams, and carry out all of those duties simultaneously. The Leadership Board is meant to steer the ship and set larger church goals, not manage the everyday tasks of church life. Work Teams will be commissioned for specific projects that are only short-term commitments, but require more people than are on staff. Church staff and ministry teams of other committed lay people will guide the day to day ministry, and of course, be carried out by all those who claim the name of Christ.
4) Isn’t 9 too few people? Aren’t we missing out on talent or opinions?
The Lay Discipleship Team are under expectation to nominate a diverse enough Leadership Board so as to represent as many of the distinct ages, stages, and interests that exist within Creekwood as possible, while paying attention to the gifts and talents needed to lead our church in our mission of growing deep roots to share God’s love inside and outside of our membership.
The 9 people on the Leadership Board are not expected to know everything or do everything. They are meant to guide the church and ask the right questions, so that those who are more specifically knowledgeable or more skilled can carry out the ministry needed to move the church forward. Within the organizational structure there are short-term “Work Teams,” Staff, Ministry Teams, and the overarching Charge Conference that will also be places of brainstorming, idea generation, and areas to serve.
5) Why is the current model not working?
The Church Council model is fine, but has shown itself in the context of Creekwood UMC to be cumbersome and inefficient. In plain words: it is too slow and disjointed. If we meet more to end the lack of communication, then the meeting schedule becomes too hard to handle for many lay leaders who already are asked to attend a potential 2-4 extra meetings a month on top of the ministry work done in-between meetings – and their normal 9-5 life. If we continue in the meeting schedule that we have, things happen slowly and without coordination way too easily.
In the modern day, we know people have schedules that may be more jam-packed than in previous generations, and we know that efficiency has been found to be valuable when attempting to move projects forward. As one writer put it, “The current model has been established to keep the status quo. If we are going to be the church for the 21st century, we need to adopt a model that meets the needs of the 21st century.”
To put it plainly, this model allows greater cohesion and efficiency, allowing related items such as finances, building needs, staff needs, and ministry needs to all be brought up in the same conversation by people who have authority over all of them.
6) What Happens to Those Who are Currently Serving on a Business Team?
Of the 27 people currently serving on Trustees, Finance, and SPR:
- 9 of them are nominated for the Leadership Board
- 9 of them are scheduled to end their tenure on July 31st anyways
- Some of them had already resigned due to health concerns or other reasons.
- The rest will be invited to serve on Work Teams, teach Sunday school, Greet, and other meaningful ways of helping the church fulfill it’s mission.
If you have other questions ahead of the vote, please feel free to e-mail me. Otherwise, I will look forward to seeing you on Sunday for worship and the Church Conference at Noon. Because, remember, we still do have church after Easter Sunday :).