Listening Session Table Notes

TABLE 1

For what are you Grateful?

–          Church history

–          Staff

–          congregation with money

–          Children’s education

–          Many hardworking members,

–          Good music

–          Thought-provoking sermons

–          Friendly faces

–          A nice facility

–          Welcoming attitude

–          Change/progression

–          Good snacks

–          Variety in worship styles

Of what are you Afraid?

–          Too much time in transition; may be losing opportunities to serve the community; losing members, causing financial instability

–          As we prepare for change we are losing some strength and communication between staff and members

–          Not paying attention to people who need help in the church

–          Not nurturing/growing in our faith

–          Very inwardly focused; money not going to service projects

–          Are we going to be able to find a qualified senior pastor within our budget?

What gives you Hope?

–          Core group of committed, caring members

–          New members joining

–          People leading youth programs

–          Nearing the end of the process?

–          Our church is about the people as much as it is the pastor

What is God inviting us to pay Attention to?

–          Why are people really leaving? Changes in pastor? Changes in ELCA? Missing programs?

–          More people involved beyond Sunday services

–          The length of the steps in the call process

How can we work Together?

–          Maintain our core faith values

–          Get more youth involved in the changes

–          Lots of tasty snacks

 

TABLE 2

For what are you Grateful?

–          Friends

–          Fellowship

–          Church family

–          Building/property

–          Congregation that’s caring

–          Open mindedness

–          Christian Education for Kids

–          Music

–          Children

–          Strong Leaders/Pastors

–          Creativity

–          Caring

–          Outreach Programs

Of what are you Afraid/Concerned?

–          Continued Strong Pastoral Leadership

–          Too long of a process- causes us to lose valuable members/friends

–          Lack of interest

–          Programs will suffer

–          Financial stability

–          Burn out of church leaders

–          Unable to attract new members

–          Keeping youth/young families interested

–          COR survival

What gives you Hope?

–          Open opportunities

–          Church family

–          Good guidance/process leads to excellent pastor that fit

–          Conversations with others

–          Youth program & participation is strong

–          Music program & participation is strong

–          Christian Education program is strong

–          Willingness of members (new and old) to step up – even to do new thing/leadership

–          Desire to stick together

–          Turn out @ Transition events

What is God inviting us to pay Attention to?

–          Where we are going

–          Embrace change

–          Each other’s desires/needs

–          Things we took for granted

–          Needs of community

How can we work Together?

–          Listen

–          Good communication

–          Be respectful

–          Be open/honest

–          Open to others Emotional State

–          Offer solutions rather than Issues

–          Be Positive

–          Continue to be Invested

–          Show up- Be present

–          Operate with love/kindness

–          Put other’s needs in forefront

–          WWJD

 

TABLE 3

For what are you Grateful?

–          Friends

–          Faith community

–          Musical leadership

–          Faith opportunities

–          Small relationship growths – outreach ministries

–          Good lay leadership (within & outside of service)

–          Beautiful facility

–          Staff

–          Diakonia – 3 graduates and 3 students

–          Multi-generational

Of what are you Afraid?

–          Membership

–          Finances

–          Fragmentation

–          Lack of pastoral support in times of personal needs

–          Staff decline

–          Lack of worship attendance

–          Lack of a good first impression

–          Lack of meaningful/inspiring sermons

What gives you Hope?

–          Tonight’s turnout

–          Good participation throughout the transition process

–          Taking financial responsibility

–          Active ministries during transition

–          Psalm 23

What is God inviting us to pay Attention to?

–          Needs of people

–          Larger community

–          People’s differences

–          Finances

–          Faith values/ decision – making

–          Word and sacrament

–          Stewardship

–          Property

–          Lay participation/using out time and talents

–          Welcoming environment/impressions

–          Opportunities for change

–          Each other as congregational members

How can we work Together?

–          Listen more closely

–          Honest dialogue

–          Team collaboration

–          Encouraged participation

–          Respect

 

TABLE 4

For what are you Grateful?

–          Committee involvement

–          Committee members

–          Community feel

–          Sunday school leadership

–          Opportunity to be involved

–          Welcoming church

Of what are you Afraid?

–          Transition is taking too long

–          Children’s music program participation decreasing

–          Decreasing membership

–          Loss of associate pastor

What gives you Hope?

–          Family Oriented

–          Everybody stepping up

–          New staff possibilities

–          Core members remained

–          VBS success (34 kids, 20 volunteers)

–          Dedication

What is God inviting us to pay Attention to?

–          He’s in charge

–          Other demographics within

–          Our church (empty nesters, single moms, etc.)

–          Fellowship through service

–          Spiritual gifts

–          Promote welcoming church – diversity

How can we work Together?

–          Avoid blame/no finger pointing

–          Communication

–          More transparent about church committees

–          Tap other resources/members

 

TABLE 5

For what are you Grateful?

–          Relationships within our church

–          Commitment to Christian Ed & music programs

–          Volunteers & lay leadership

–          All are welcome in this place

–          Opportunities for meaningful conversation together

–          Our history

Of what are you Afraid?

–          Sustainability

–          Are our people feeling fulfilled spiritually?

–          Engagement & participation

–          Uncertainty in transition (and timeline)

–          Effective communication & transparency

What gives you Hope?

–          Those gathered here who are committed and love our church (and those who can’t be here too)

–          KIDS – children and youth!

–          Knowing the Holy Spirit has and will continue to work through us

–          GRACE

What is God inviting us to pay Attention to?

–          How do we “do church” in a changing culture?

–          Be open to new perspectives

–          To remain steadfast in our faith

How can we work Together?

–          Communicating to listen and learn

–          Discover and use our collective and individual gifts

–          Supporting each other in our ministry

 

TABLE 6

For what are you Grateful?

–          For the staff and the people who volunteer

–          For the loving community

–          History of our church – Church of the Resurrection

–          For the pride that we have in the people and church

–          We are willing to listen

–          For people who are concerned

–          We have done many good things – it is worth preserving and fighting for

Of what are you Afraid?

–          Membership/Giving reduction

–          Active staff may resign

–          Division amongst the members

–          Direction – who is leading

–          Lack of transparency

–          Lack of communication/fact or fiction

–          Shared leadership needed

–          Sermons are not connecting and feeding our faith

What gives you Hope?

–          People are here to talk about the future- participate in this discussion

–          Great staff

–          We have a lot of great people in our membership

–          This transition will end

–          Jesus will continue to work in the world

–          Why all the changes?

What is God inviting us to pay Attention to?

–          (included in TABLE 7 & 8 responses)

How can we work Together?

–          (included in TABLE 7 & 8 responses)

 

TABLES 7 & 8

For what are you Grateful?

–          Music program

–          Committed people

–          Involvement of members (time)

–          Diversity of members but unified

–          Education program

–          Good sermons

–          Numerous opportunities

–          Church family

–          Worship services (different liturgies)

–          Solid foundation

–          Hard-working, committed people

–          Strong music & youth education programs

–          Great facility

Of what are you Afraid?

–          Economic situation (future)

–          Membership

–          Future staffing

–          Loss of members

–          Lose momentum in programs

–          Future

–          How do we get others involved?

–          Need for balanced budget vs. needs/desires for additional programming

–          Getting on board with the steps to next path for COR/acceptance of steps, new leadership

What gives you Hope?

–          Quality of our leadership

–          Continued member involvement

–          Committed people

–          Youth

–          Foundation of our church

–          Young families

–          Young leadership

–          Strong leaders, committed members who want to keep this successful

–          Willingness to pitch in when needed

What is God inviting us to pay Attention to? (includes TABLE 6 responses)

–          Lake Country community (get outside of church walls)

–          Individual involvement

–          Our neighbors in need

–          Strengths we already have to build on

–          Missions/outreach ministry – our neighbors, our community & beyond

–          Working together when there is disagreement

–          Being more welcoming

–          Becoming more aware of needs of struggling members, neighbors, etc.

–          What is really important?

–          Focus on our faith, worship

–          We need to be fed

–          Focus on building up your own faith so we can carry the load during this transition

How can we work Together? (includes TABLE 6 responses)

–          Break out of comfort zone

–          Move beyond current circles

–          Be more welcoming/friendly/inviting to new people

–          Open communication with people different from us

–          Be inclusive of others

–          Welcoming place for all

–          More peer group opportunities, outlets

–          Recognize the efforts that are expended in making COR successful

–          Working toward the future, being willing to be respectful, being willing to embrace change

Look around for people who are getting overburdened while carrying this load and tell them you appreciate them and pray for them.