Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

The New Governance Approach

The new governance approach to living out God’s call to be “the church” in a community whose needs have changed greatly over the years is now in place. This means looking at how a congregation can best meet the changing dynamic of the world around it from a different perspective. It means determining the best way to use the congregation’s resources both financial and volunteer in reaching out to those in need within the church and in the community.
Changes are taking place every day and the phrase, ”life as we know it” is slipping away every day of our lives and most often we really don’t take that much notice unless it seems to affect us personally. I have mentioned previously how the building of the ION (the light rail system) has changed the driving patterns of any of us who need to cross over King Street, or Duke, or Charles, or who wish to drive on Courtland. Humans, for the most part do not like inconvenience even if, in the end, it develops into a great convenience.
Church life, as many of us know it, has changed dramatically over the years and many of us have struggled over the changes. i.e. some folk still feel more comfortable singing from a book than looking up to a screen, some folk would still like the bread and wine passed in the pews rather than served by intinction. Some prefer what is known as the King James Version of the Bible commissioned by King James and actually copied from several other versions of the text already in existence back in the 1500s. And many appreciate the New Revised Standard or some other translation written in contemporary language that may be easier to understand.
So changes take place, some out of necessity; some out of discovering a better way of doing things.
Our volunteer leaders will change in June as we live into our new governance model. As Forest Hill United comes to the end of our Intentional Interim Ministry in December, it is a good time to change the ministry staff of the church as well. The Needs Assessment which will happen on Sunday the 17th of April will help determine what a new ministry team will look like.
One of the most difficult decisions a person has to make in a “calling” such as mine, is choosing the right, the best, the suitable, the convenient, the obvious time to move on.
I came to Forest Hill United Church to help with a small, but important part of the many roles a minister is expected to play while “issues” of governance were sorted out. I said “No” to committee meetings, to presbytery meetings, to working with youth and children, but agreed to help with pastoral care. It has been a very rewarding and privileged experience although I did not imagine it extending four years.
A congregation, to thrive and not just survive, must embrace change as a positive move, as painful as it may seem. Technology has enabled ministry to be done differently and in most situations more conveniently or efficiently and a new team in place at Forest Hill United will allow a perspective that embraces the change that will help Forest Hill United be an important player in being a part of God’s call to care for those in the community that are in need.
I am asking that when participating in the needs assessment, to accept that I will not be a part of the team but someone who supports whoever fills the needs that the assessment determines are your reality.
It has been an unexpected joy to serve these past four years. Thank you and God’s blessings,