What Should Be Added to This Network?

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What else would you like to see in the Elders network? Please submit your ideas and suggestions.

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So far it looks good - Thanks for now -

Community Builder

I have been thinking about topics in the area of pastoral care. So I thought I would ask: what are some of the areas of concern you are dealing with as elders? And if you have a great resource on this concern, share it with us. Love to hear from you.

Participant

I would agree with that Neil,

Our elders could use some real help with initiating tough conversations as well as how to be a good listener. We have all male elders at this time and I could see the benefit of topics dealing with being sensitive and not so much giving advice.

Our elders are working on long range (5-year) plans. Any good resources/advice would be helpful.

Community Builder

Hi Kris, thanks for the question. There are many resources but perhaps telling me more about the purpose and context would help me be more specific. One question would be - is there an agreed vision and mission statement? or is this part of the long range planning you are doing? Second question is what is the impulse for this planning? is it a routine process or are there particular challenges you are facing at this time? Third, is this a short period exercise (2 months) or a long one (6-9 months). As you can appreciate the process changes.

meanwhile, I have found the book HOLY CONVERSATIONS to be quite helpful. Techniques like brainstorming can ferret out the central concerns and begin to establish some goals as well. (I plan to post this in an article some time but haven't finished it, but you can find these on the www).

others I am sure have some great suggestions as well (hint to others).

The Mission/Vision concept is a good place to start. We first formed a "Cornerstone" committee to review our structures to see how we were organized. From there we formed areas of focus such as Fellowship, Education, Evangelism and Worship, and created Vision statements for each of these. This gave of the committee's as well as the elders a way of looking at our congregational life to further enhance to areas that were lacking.
We also used the "Natural Church Development" program to help determine our strengths and weakness's.
http://www.sussexcrc.org/Mission_and_Vision.html
http://www.sussexcrc.org/Cornerstone.html
http://www.ncd-international.org/public/index.html

Community Builder

Hi all,
How do churches equip members to assist elders in pastoral care? Do any churches have a pastoral care team that assists with sending cards, regular visits, phone calls, etc?

Community Builder

Yes we do. There are three teams at work.
One is called Caring Touch. They visit occasionally. They send cards weekly. This team of people demonstrates that the church notices, prays and keeps in touch with members of the church. Cards are sent if a person's name is listed in church family news, at significant times in a persons life (grads, profession of faith, weddings, births, deaths). Visits are made at the time of birth and to senior members.
Another is Stephen Ministries. They provide regular care for people who are facing particular struggles at the moment. Doesn't matter what kind of struggle. If they need regular pastoral care because of a special need, our Stephen's ministers make regular visits.
And then there is the group that provides meals to those who have a particular need at the moment. We have extended this care to those struggling with health issues. And also given meals to families celebrating the birth of a child.
Each ministry has assisted the work of elders.
Need more info?
Neil

Participant

I would love to see sample job descriptions for: President of Council, Clerk, Adjunct, Treasurer etc.

Also, a good guide for taking minutes that are useful and contain enough information to be effective but not overly detailed.

Admin

Randy,

Thanks for joining The Network.

Sheri (the Church Admin Guide) has assembled a wide variety of resources like this, including 14 sample job descriptions. You can read her post about the listing and then follow the link she provides.

Hope this helps. If so, please help spread the word about The Network!

Tim

Participant

Thanks Tim. Unfortunately there are no sample job descriptions for functionaries of council. Also, we need a basic guide for taking minutes, especially for communities in which few people are familiar with business/board meetings. If we end up finding or creating some, we will share them on the network.

Another question: If I am logged in, why do I still have to type that captcha thing all the time?

Randy

 

Admin

re: Captcha - Good question, Randy, and one that has me wondering if we should revisit that. I've posted an explanation here that asks for input. Thanks for the feedback!

Participant

...I should add that there is a sample job description there for treasurer and assitant treasurer. We have used those resources and they are very helpful.

Community Builder

Hi Randy,

The samples include a description for treasurer and assistant treasurer.  I'm working on the President, Clerk, etc.--good idea! I'll get back to you with info on preparing minutes also.  Thanks for the great comments!

 

Participant

Thanks Sheri,
You might notice I tried to correct my oversight there in that last post. These comments arise from recent experience of looking for resources to train new officebearers, many of whom have never chaired a meeting or taken minutes. We tend to get minutes that are too vague to be useful or else overly detailed. Also, I think the seminary ought to have some kind of training in policy and process for pastors (what I received years ago was not all that adequate or practical; it was all about big theories of how systems works and not the basics about how to get things done and how to communicate effectively), Do you know who teaches church admin over there?

Randy

Participant

Hi, Sheri, wondering if you've thought about those council functionary job descriptions, or if any other churches have made them up.

Thanks, Randy

(from Riverside, not far from Redlands!)

Community Builder

Hi all,

I responded by email but missed the post under comments.  I have contacted a few churches and now have a sample from another church with a few duties listed for chairs. You will find "Sample Church #2 Council Responsibilities"  under "Church Organization and Administration" and then "Administration."  Hope this helps.  I'll continue to look for other resources.

[quote=slaninga]

Hi all,

I responded by email but missed the post under comments.  I have contacted a few churches and now have a sample from another church with a few duties listed for chairs. You will find "Sample Church #2 Council Responsibilities"  under "Church Organization and Administration" and then "Administration."  Hope this helps.  I'll continue to look for other resources.

[/quote]

Thanks for posting this. I just downloaded it as well as the "Elder Deacon Mandates." Both look like useful resources!

 

Community Builder

Here is a link to a site on "How to Take Meeting Minutes."  If you google church meeting minutes, you will find other helpful sites.  Maybe someone wants to put together a synopsis from these sites and post it here.