- After the first year, we decided that the responsibilities for Nurture were too large -- too many. We were meeting monthly, and only were really able to address education issues. Worship (another part of Nurture) was being ignored. Because of that, the Celebrations Committee was created. It oversees our worship and receptions ministries, relieving Nurture of those jobs. Nurture still has a huge plate of things to do, but in our church, this made it more manageable.
- I believe that the structure simplified our committees. We had work areas on everything you could think of prior to this change -- now it is easier to understand the committee structure.
- With any new organization, training and communication become of paramount concern. Everyone needs to understand what each committee is to do. Personally, I still think this is an issue in our church, even after all of these years.
- All of our committees -- the four programming committees and the administrative committees -- report to our Ministry Leadership Council. I think it is vital that this larger, oversight committee become a center for communication. We all need to talk about what is happening, share ideas, support and celebrate ministry in our church. It needs to happen at these meetings. We are still working on this. One of the major changes we made (and it doesn't sound big, but it translates into better communication) is that we moved the meeting from the chapel, where we sat in pews, to a room where we sit at a large table, facing each other. Big impact - it opened up discussions that didn't happen before.
- Committee chairman need to understand that part of the committee's job is to involve everyone in ministry. Give them the freedom to pull people onto their committees as needed, to invite members to ministry. Give them freedom to form teams to tackle problems, to form task forces.
Our visioning committee just completed a vision / mission process for the discernment of a vision for our church. As we completed it, and stepped back to look at it, we realized that our mission statement parallels our committee structure. We didn't plan that. It just happened. What it says to me is that the NOW (or our amended NOWC) structure provides for the circular running of ministry in a church -- bring people to God (Witness), help them to grow in faith (Nurture (and Celebrations)) and reach out in service (Outreach). It is a complete church.
Image: Sky one morning at the high school.