The fall season is upon us and some of our readers will serve as Elders. You will have thought about the task ahead, perhaps with some trepidation. Below is a list of some hints for Elders by way of well-meant advice. I hope that it helps!
The list will not be complete. Let it be an invitation to our readers to add a few of their own for all of us to learn more:
- Spiritual self-care cannot be overestimated.
- Cultivate Christ-likeness as a serving person.
- Study what the office of Elder is all about.
- Propose to the Consistory that teachings be held for pastoral visiting. Methods and ways of doing a pastoral visit are especially important.
- Try to get to know the members of the congregation, especially the members of your district. (That includes children and young people).
- A good administrative system will prove useful. (You may consider having a fact-sheet for each member).
- Keep the members of your district informed about news and needs of your district.
- Plan the annual visits to the members of your district early in the season.
- Familiarize yourself with the needs of the sick, the elderly, and others with special needs.
- Arrange for helpful cooperation with the deacon who is assigned with you to your district.
- Remember that your marriage and family take precedence over other activities.
- People should never doubt that personal information is safe with you.
- Don't discuss members with members (unless it is pastorally and professionally necessary).
- The pastoral needs of the pastor(s) are important.
- Consider having a log book that you keep up-to-date.
- Are you and the other office bearers aware of possible drug addiction in the congregation?
What hints would YOU add to this list?