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Church Council Training Event 2014


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The Church Council is the visionary and leadership body of the church. This presentation was given during a Leadership Training event on January 18, 2014 for the Little Kanawha District of the West Virginia Annual Conference. You can contact me for more information or teaching opportunities at

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Church Council Training Event 2014

  1. 1. Leadership Development Training Rev. Dr. Steve Gedon
  2. 2. (people, personalities, problems) (actions, activities, agendas) (practical, resources, timing)
  3. 3. The executive agency of the charge conference (¶244). This means that between meetings of the charge conference, the church council is the group of leaders who guide and further the ministry of the congregation.
  4. 4. (Organization) (Decision) (Strategy) (support) (implement)
  5. 5. The council exists to create and supervise the strategic plan for an effective congregation. The CC should reflect the character and population of the congregation.
  6. 6. THE GOAL OF THIS CHURCH is not to create a space for people to conveniently look upon God, but to enable willing disciples to grow, thrive and be shaped into the Image of Christ in thought, actions, and experience.
  7. 7. THE CHURCH is not a finished product comprised of perfect people, rather people united, shaped and guided by the Word of God and energized by the Spirit of God.
  8. 8. Church is about Ministry “Ministry is the ongoing attempt to put one's own search for God, with all the moments of pain and joy, despair and hope, at the disposal of those who want to join this search but do not know how.” Henri Nouwen
  9. 9. Church is a Maturing Process. It is not possible for a Christian to be spiritually mature while remaining emotionally immature.
  10. 10. Church is a Maturing Process. “The church will never mature beyond the leadership.” Peter Scazzero
  11. 11. Church is a Maturing Process. “Christians are made, not born.” Tertullian
  12. 12. Church is a Maturing Process. “[Jesus] is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.” Colossians 1:28-29
  13. 13. Discover and Utilize their Gifts, Talents, Personalities, Experiences and Interests to become fully Mature.
  14. 14. Leader, decisive, authoritative, powerful, clear, concise, timely, visionary, action Vision-Oriented
  15. 15. Authoritarian, insensitive, demanding, ruthless, destructive, feared, not a great team player, terrible follower, not good listener
  16. 16. Organized, detail oriented, focused, secretary, priorities, hard worker, busy, agenda, action Task Oriented, good team player
  17. 17. Solitary, Process over people, achievements, Task Oriented, driven
  18. 18. Funloving, cohesive, energized, excitable, people over projects, friendly, engaging, life of the party Fun-Oriented
  19. 19. Easy to distract, not focused, not dependable, ADD kind of people, distracting, It’s not all about you!
  20. 20. Loyal, sensing, people oriented, emotionally intelligent, emotionally healthy, soothing, comforting, integrity
  21. 21. Analysis paralysis, consensus or nothing, cannot stand unhappy people, abhors change, takes debate and discussion personally
  22. 22. Consumers “weekend warriors” Avoid Consultants Embrace Contributors.
  23. 23. Materialist “what’s the cost?” Avoid the “Rainy-Day” mentality Embrace Blessed to be a Blessing
  24. 24. Christian Energized and excited by GOD. Avoid ‘Woe-is-me’ Mentality Embrace Risk taker.
  25. 25. Meaning: How do we see life and our place in it? Message: What is our story and how do we tell it? Mission: What are we here for and what do we do?
  26. 26. Members: How do we connect with people and include them in our movement? Mobility: How do we command attention in a fastmoving world?
  27. 27. Money: How do we support our cause? Metrics: What do we measure and what do these numbers mean?
  28. 28. •Elevate (Inspire) – What can we achieve together? •Envision (Plan) – How are we going to do it? •Engage (Do) – When & with whom will it happen? •Evaluation (Learn) – Outcomes, Lessons, Improve
  29. 29. Elevate (inspire) Resources, goals, talents, demographics, passions, growth, dreams  Create Excitement
  30. 30. Envision Champion, Plan, Resources, Stretch
  31. 31. Engage Support, Encouragement, Resource, Motivate, Educate, Employ
  32. 32. Evaluate Learn, Document, Ask, Celebrate, Affirm
  33. 33. Implement Support, encouragement, enthusiasm
  34. 34.  (¶244) – Organization  (¶251.3) – Role of the Chair  (¶252) – Council Roles & Functions
  35. 35.  Meet at least quarterly  Be attentive to Ministry before Administration  Use consensus and discernment for decision making
  36. 36.  Fill leadership vacancies  Review Membership of the congregation  Recommend salary package for pastor to charge conference
  37. 37. What is the Church Council?    Church Council is the administrative agency of the charge conference. Carries out the Mission and Vision of the Charge Conference. Chair of this group is elected annually by the charge conference (¶251.3).
  38. 38. BUSINESS VS MINISTRY BUSINESS FOCUS        Running the church Burnout/low interest Like secular meetings Short term focus Avoid risks Blame Control, power and decision making stays here MINISTRY FOCUS        Making disciples Personal renewal Experience God Kingdom focus Experiment Try to do it better Follow God’s lead, empower others to make decisions
  39. 39. Chairperson Responsibilities?   Lead the council in fulfilling its responsibilities as outlined in The Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church, 2008, ¶252. Work with the pastor(s) and other Leaders to fulfill the mission of “making Disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.”  Hold the BIG picture  Build an agenda in consultation with Pastor  Coordinate ministries among planning groups  Follow up decisions (no micro-managing)  Build the group and develop new leaders
  40. 40. Other Responsibilities  Review the membership of the local church;  Fill interim vacancies occurring among the lay officers of the church between sessions of the annual charge conference;  Establish the budget on recommendation of the committee on finance and ensure adequate provision for the financial needs of the church;
  41. 41. One of the core responsibilities of the council is to “lead the visioning and strategic planning process within the church”
  42. 42. Vision is a capacity to see the system differently.
  43. 43. One of the most important tasks in formulating a meaningful vision is to gather information
  44. 44.    Discern what is special about your context Why has God place your church where it is located? What are the unique features about your community?
  45. 45.    Who lives in your community? Who goes to your church? What is unique about your church?
  46. 46.  What need can your church meet better than any other organization in your community?  What are the available resources?
  47. 47. The church council exists to create and supervise the strategic plan for your local congregation .
  48. 48. Twofold function includes both leadership and management. Leadership is the visionary, "big picture" work that assesses critically where your congregation is at the present moment, where God is calling it to be in the future, and what resources will be required to move from your current reality into the desired future.
  49. 49. Management is the essential "detail work" that must be accomplished on a daily basis to make the congregation effective.
  50. 50. ef·fec·tive producing a desired or intended result. synonyms: successful, effectual, potent, powerful; helpful, beneficial, advantageous, valuable, useful; convincing, compelling, strong, forceful, potent, weighty, impactful, sound, valid
  51. 51. Our Mission Make Disciples of Jesus Christ Make a Difference in the World. Our Goals  Strategy Inspirational Worship Experiences Intentional Christian Discipleship Involved in Practical Christianity Inviting Faith Conversations
  52. 52. 87% Protestant congregations in US are stagnant or declining 77% of people on church boards said the quality of their spiritual life “went down” while serving Every group of churches over 20 years old are declining as a group
  53. 53. What kills passion? 1. Problem-solving syndrome (where there is no vision) 2. Busy-enough now 3. No vacancy (no more energy) 4. Nostalgia (comfortable in the present…) 5. Lazarus syndrome (recovering the dissatisfied)
  54. 54. Unhealthy core values that drive churches (Rick Warren) 1. Tradition (what did we do before?) 2. Personality (what does the leader want?) 3. Finance (how much does it cost?) 4. Program (what are we already doing?) 5. Building (if you have a room the kids cannot use …) 6. Needy (simply give people what they want?)
  55. 55. Three types of people attend church: 1. Casual (ready to visit) Reached by outreach ministries 2. Curious (ready to grow) Reached by spiritual growth ministries 3. Committed (ready to serve) Reached by equipping ministries 8. Balanced Ministry Strategy Thriving church systems minister to each stage!
  56. 56. Seasonal waves 1. Christmas 2. January 1 3. Easter 4. Mother’s Day & 5. Father’s Day 6. Start of school year
  57. 57. Front door waves Marriage conferences, recovery ministries, having a variety of services (style, location)
  58. 58. Message waves Preaching in series (start on key days) Postmodern (conversational) style Titled for take-home value
  59. 59. Staffing waves Bringing on folk who attract new group of people
  60. 60. 50% of world is now younger than 16 and 80% become Christian before age 21
  61. 61. Future Staff which Attracts Growth Present Staff which Supports Growth 5. Grow your Staff Build a staff which builds ministries which build people.
  62. 62. People grow and serve best when they know what the steps are What’s your game plan for discipleship? Spiritual gift implementation Being “high expectation”
  63. 63. Annual parenting and marriage sermons series Those who are not parents or spouses are educated for other roles in relation to our family ministries
  64. 64. A church can get bigger as long is it keeps getting smaller. Different spiritual needs are met by different size groups in the church.
  65. 65. The #1 job of the pastor is to guard the “spirit” of the church
  66. 66. Model emotionally healthy family relationships Public/personal encouragement Creating atmospheres of grace while making phonies and critics squirm
  67. 67. When churches deal with these factors, they pollinate the church … and create the kind of greenhouse in which seeds can grow and flower.
  68. 68. The charge conference will determine the size of the church council. Members of the church council shall be involved in the mission and ministry of the congregation as defined in ¶ 252.2.
  69. 69. Council shall include persons who represent the program ministries of the church as outlined in ¶ 243.
  70. 70. The membership shall include but not be limited to:              the chairperson of the church council; the chairperson and/or a representative of : the pastor-parish relations committee; the committee on finance; the board of trustees; the church treasurer; the lay leader; a lay member to annual conference; the United Methodist Men; the United Methodist Women; the United Methodist Youth; the pastor(s). others Children’s Advocate, Program Ministries,
  71. 71.   The pastor is the administrative officer of the local church and therefore is an ex officio member of most committees (¶ 244.3, 2008 BOD). Ex officio members have both voice and vote.
  72. 72.         Preparation: agenda and reports A time of learning Thoughtful devotional A time of discernment Celebration of Ministry Decision made Actionable Plans Communication planned
  73. 73. Can anyone attend a committee meeting? Who is allowed to vote at committee meetings?
  74. 74. Can paid staff persons vote on the church council or other committees?
  75. 75.  Genuine Christian character who love the Christ and His church
  76. 76. Person who are morally disciplined, are committed to the mandate of inclusiveness in the life of the church
  77. 77. Loyal to the ethical standards of The United Methodist Church set forth in the Social Principles, and are competent to administer its affairs.
  78. 78.     Disciples (growing & doing) Clear about our mission (thinking) Visionaries (prayerful & discerning) Spiritual Leaders (mentors & guides)
  79. 79. Task of Leaders          Lead meeting Listening Delegation Organize Vision-transfer the vision Communicate Motivate Patience Spiritual Maturity         Prioritize Flexible Money Management Risk Taker Researcher Learner Strategize Humility & Accountability
  80. 80. “Once the soul awakens, the search begins and you can never go back.”