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There was a time when the idea of a "regional ministry" was picking up steam. "We could do more together than we could independantly". Several of our area classes were forming "Classis Ministry Committees" (CMC) and exploring ambitious goals that led to hiring part time staff to facilitate these goals. Recently, I understand that several of these classes no longer employ staff. Im just wondering whether the idea of classes staff has come and gone, what has happened to the idea of regional ministry or has congregationalism won? 



Frank ,

In Classis Pacific Northwest we do in fact have a part-time(1/2)  regional missionary who is tasked with furthering the goals and objectives of tne Mission Multiplication Team (MMT).    This task is now heavily  weighted towards supporting church  plants but as of lately we are in conversations about how can the MMT better support the established churches, especially those who are struggling.    With the current trends of giving and less denominational loyalty, we are feeling that we need to find resources as close to the local church as possible.  The classis seems like the logical nexus to locate these needed resournces. 


It would seem best when regional ministries are not established simply to have or fill a position, but rather to meet an obvious need or to meet a specific achievable goal.   A tendency is possible to continue with certain regional staff even when the need is not there, and then to ignore other needs because financial and human resources are already allocated or exhausted.   Regional ministries are probably most effective when they meet a criteria of flexibility and need, and avoid meeting a "formula" or avoid the criteria of traditional expectation.  

One of the things one needs to grapple when hiring staff is - does the Classis have the Personnel infrastructure in place to ensure it is able to address HR, Payroll, Benefits, WCB, etc. issues. It is difficult to say the least in a body like a classis where committee members rollover every 3 years and the duties of treasurer are part-time and may not extend to areas identified above. Employment legislation, etc. is a more complex issue today.

It is easier to provide grant monies to an incorporated ministry entity.

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