The forums are in preparation for the Meeting of the Congregation on Sunday, January 28, 2018.
Dear Fellow Messiah Members,
Just a year ago we were about to embark together on a journey of discernment as the people of Messiah. We reported to you in June that, in listening to each other and the Holy Spirit, the community of Messiah was being called in unexpected and exciting ways. Click here to see the Church Leadership Team's June Report with its mission imperatives.
We have worked during the second half of the year to begin to understand and implement our new ideas. We have learned and studied more, met with the staff and talked about changes we see coming, and especially began to tackle how we might call a new Mission Developer. We would like to let you know what has been going on in this area particularly. In this letter we will provide you an overview, and invite you to forums we have set up in advance of our Semi-Annual Meeting of the Congregation on January 28. Details regarding the days and times for the forums are at the bottom of this letter.
There were two overarching issues around a Mission Developer – how to find the special person we were seeking, and how to fund the position. In order to engage more people in the process, the CLT convened a task group to explore these questions for all of us: Rick Backous, Kris Ann Bial, Kathy and Peter Braafladt, Ryan Dockery, Grace Middelstadt, Christine Quinn, Greg Rhodes, and Theresa Zimmer. They considered various options and consulted with the synod office. In a nutshell, here is what we learned from them:
- We had an unusual idea for finding a Mission Developer: instead of writing a job description, ask for proposals, i.e., invite candidates to tell us what they would do with a fairly open-ended opportunity, given the facts of Messiah and Clark County. That would leave room for the Holy Spirit to continue to surprise us with new opportunities and ideas. However, we wondered if this would attract good applicants, and whether the synod would be able or willing to assist us. It turns out, the Bishop's office is enthusiastic about the idea and believes it would attract strong proposals! The task group has a number of ideas for getting the word out, and we will begin working on this as soon as funding is secured.
- After considering several ways of funding a new position, the group unanimously felt that a capital campaign was the best choice. This aligns well with some other concerns and needs that emerged during the congregational phase of the discernment process. With a capital campaign, the congregation could cover these additional areas and be well within the financial capacity of Messiah:
- Funding the first several years of a Mission Developer,
- Repair of re-roof of the Hazel Dell campus roof and address other maintenance needs,
- Retiring the existing debt, and
- Funding an Administrative Manager to free the pastors of an ever-growing list of daily management tasks, e.g., finances, human resources, etc., that have reduced their time to provide leadership, focus on congregational development, and utilize their pastoral gifts.
We know you have questions. Rather than trying to answer every possible question in a letter, we invite you to attend any one of several upcoming open forums. The agenda will be to provide a brief outline of our thinking, then we will talk together. Please plan to be part of one or more of these conversations. And then, join us for the Meeting of the Congregational on January 28, when together we will vote to affirm this path forward.
We are grateful to be among the faithful people of Messiah and for the work God calls us to.
Faithfully, your Church Leadership Team
Janette Anderson, Kris Ann Bial, Ron Klump, Beth Ludvigsen, Joe Marvin, Mike Ordren, Larry Pedersen, Doug Ruecker, Theresa Zimmer along with Prs. Peter and Kathy Braafladt and Project Manager Greg Rhodes
The Open Forums in preparation for the Meeting of the Congregation on January 28, 2018:
- Sunday, January 14, 9:00am in the Tri Mountain Golf Course Banquet Room
- Saturday, January 20, 4:00pm in the HD Fellowship Hall
- Sunday, January 21, 11:00am in the HD Fellowship Hall
- Wednesday, January 24, 9:00am in the HD Fellowship Hall
- Wednesday, January 24, 6:00pm in the HD Sanctuary
Child care will be available in the nursery during all forum times.