I’m thrilled to welcome Staci DeVries as The Network’s new Community Manager. In this half-time position, Staci is here for YOU - the members of this Network community. She’s here to help you if you run stuck, welcome new people into the community, encourage the awesome work of our volunteer guides, and generally foster the ministry-related collaboration that makes The Network special.
Here’s a brief interview with Staci so you can get to know her and her role better.
What interested you about this position?
What first appealed to me about this job was the aspect of building community. Two of my favorite things are telling stories and interacting with people. I like The Network because it is a space where people can help each other. The internet and social media are powerful platforms and I appreciate the valuable content The Network provides those looking for answers in ministry and beyond.
What areas of church ministry have you been involved with, and how has that prepared you for this role?
I have primarily been involved with youth ministry, serving as a GEMS leader and on Youth Unlimited Serve teams. Besides youth ministry, I served as a member of a Pastor Search Committee. I've also belonged to several small group Bible studies, both for women and couples. Each of these experiences was unique and gave me a different picture of how the church works. While my heart lies more in youth ministry, it was good for me to see the conversations that take place when a church is looking for a new pastor. Churches are not exempt from conflict but my experiences in ministry have shown me that there are many really good things taking place and that is what I am excited about sharing (and helping people find!).
Why should the average church member care about The Network?
The Network is a great place to learn from people with decades of ministry experience and find answers to questions you may have! It’s also a glimpse into the mind of the church. What are the relevant issues and how are we responding? The church needs an open dialogue and The Network is a space where critical ministry conversations are happening.
So, as Community and Content Manager, what are some of the things you do on a daily/weekly basis?
My ongoing tasks include ensuring that content on The Network is correctly categorized and promoted, adding pictures and descriptive text as needed. I prepare the Tuesday email that goes to Network subscribers, as well as adding a Network piece to the CRC News email. I will also be providing support to the Network Guides, who are the writers that contribute regularly to specific sections on the site.
The last goal, and most important perhaps, is to get more people connected on The Network. This is a great resource and I would love to see participation grow!
Any dreams for the site, or requests you have of people who use The Network?
I want The Network to be a valuable and useful place for people to find resources, community, and encouragement. The Network has many strengths, including a wealth of information on over 60 different topics of ministry; that is TONS of information. The Network is also a community of people that are willing to take the time to help each other with challenges and celebrate growth. Despite many strengths, there are always opportunities to improve and evolve. How can we get more participation on the site? What topics are most popular and what topics are we missing? How can we introduce more people to The Network?
I’d love your feedback and ideas as we look to the future of The Network!
Oddball question: Favorite song in the hymnal right now?
“This Is My Father's World.” It's an oldie but a goodie. This song has been used to open worship at my church recently and it feels very relevant. The world around us is incredibly chaotic but the lyrics create powerful images of everything, all of creation, being under God’s control.