First off I want to thank everyone for a fabulous worship service and party send off for Pastor Mary. I couldn’t possibly name all the people who contributed to the day and If I tried, I would be afraid of leaving somebody out. It was a great day! One member called it an act of love and it truly was. Pastor Mary was the right leader for us as a congregation at the right time. That is our goal again as we begin the process of finding our next pastor.
And indeed it is a process. Some have already asked if we are forming a Call Committee yet? There is a lot to happen before we get to that point. At our Informational Meeting on May 7th we presented details of the process and answered questions. If you could not attend, a recording of the meeting is available online. But in short here is a summary of the steps ahead of us:
Yes, it sounds like a lot, and it is. However, we are fortunate that the previous Council’s 2021-2022 long range planning efforts and listening sessions have also put us in a good position for parts of the transition work as well as MET work including: Revising our Vision, Mission, and Values statements; determining what we lost (people and our certainty and confidence in our future) and what we learned during the pandemic (Adaptability, resiliency, and focus on the moment); Identification of our strengths - welcoming, involve our youth, helpful, friendship/mutual support, giving, compassionate, music, joyfulness/liveliness, outward looking, unpretentious, inclusive, and safe; and Identification of our biggest opportunities to improve - stronger presence in the community, not always recognized for our strong outreach ministries, need to rebuild relationships within our congregation post-pandemic, and a need to attract younger people and rebuild youth programs.
In addition to our gratitude for the work already done there is a list of things we can do to move forward even before an interim/transition pastor is called these include: Updating our Reconciled in Christ status, identifying current active internal and external ministries, summarize current lay leadership and staffing, gather congregation statistics (member demographics, worship attendance, financial information), assess physical plant, review Constitution and Bylaws, and have conversations about who we are and who are neighbors are.
If you are interested in helping with any of the work ahead, please contact me! It is my extreme hope and prayer that our Resurrection family will embrace the tasks ahead with the same love and zeal they did the send off for Pastor Mary. If that happens, we cannot fail. WE are the Church!