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Our church has been exploring various models to help our council to govern better. One model we are exploring is Policy Governance, developed by John Carver. I'm wondering if any churches have implemented Policy Governance, and would be willing to dialogue about the nature of that process. Our congregation is smaller (under 100 people), so I'd be especially interested in how this plays out in similar sized church.



Joe,  about a decade ago a church where I was the pastor underwent a significant restructuring.   We used a little book called "Winning on Purpose", which was based in part on John Carver's work.    First we studied our current system. We had 6-7 committees and each committee was supposed to have 6 people.   So counting the 12 on council, we counted 48 people involved in committees in a church of 120.   Also, we noted that most months most committees came in a "no report".   When I asked the council who was responsible for ministry, they all raised their hands.   When I asked them who got fired if ministry did not go well, they all pointed at me.   So after laughing about that, we decided to shake things us.  We imagined the church as a ship.   God's ship.  The council was in charge of deciding what kind of ship it would be, when and where it would sale, and spending limits.   As the pastor I would captain the ship, and I would appoint my directors.   The directors would be responsible to me to accomplish the measurable goals set out by the council.      The council would focus on the what and I would focus on the how.   So I appointed and council ratified 1) a director of hosting, responsible for welcoming, tracking and involving new comers, 2) a director of education, responsible for Sunday School K-adult 3) a director of Spiritual Disciplines, responsible for faith nurture for all members, 4) a director of worship arts, 5) a director of service/ mission in the church 6) a director of mission / service towards the world.   The directors had clear mandates and goals and budget.   They were responsible to achieve their ends however they chose.  Some worked solo.  Some gathered a team.  I maintained contact with them and gave a ministry report each month to council.  Once a year council evaluated based on the goals that were set and new goals were put forth.  Based on the goals a budget was passed.   This system worked extremely well.   Some of the results were that the church was freed from governance  to put more energy into mission and into shepherd groups and into iron sharpen's iron groups.    Please update us on how it goes at your church.  

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