Thoughts from the Pastor

An Update on the Mission Statement

     Before we entered into our summer schedule here at church many of you were involved in working through the Vital Ministry Journey together in your Sunday School classes or perhaps even on your own.  I first want to thank all who participated in that six-week time of study, conversation, and discernment as it will be the foundation that we use to build upon as we turn now more intentionally towards crafting a church wide mission statement.

     After the Sunday School classes finished the Vital Ministry Journey together I compiled all of your responses into a digital format so that we could more easily discern the common themes that we share as a church community.  As I did this work, I discovered quite quickly these common themes I hoped for as we shared our common goals of caring for one another, being bolder in sharing our faith, and the need to have a community presence.  These are the building blocks on which we can name our shared vision as a body of Christ.

     After converting your responses into a digital format, the next step was to form a small committee made up of one representative from each Sunday School class, the Pastor, and a board representative. The purpose of this committee was to prioritize and name the strongest common themes we saw.  As way of confession it is this step that I failed to implement over the summer as I had originally planned.  The new hope is for this committee to do their work in the month or two ahead.  I ask for your grace in losing some momentum in this process over the summer but I am encouraged by those who continue to see the importance of this process and continue to ask about our progress!

     After this committee finishes its work we will present our findings to the church board.  The board will then undergo the task of crafting a mission statement that captures those common themes that undergird who we are as a people.  Once the board finishes with this task we will bring a suggested mission statement to the entire church for approval where we will also talk about what comes next.  For those that are timeline oriented my deepest hope is to have a mission statement in place by the end of the year.

     The process and journey is long and having a mission statement is not the end of our work. Once we have a shared mission together we will indeed have a clearer idea of who we are as a community of faith; but it is in claiming our shared identity as the Linville Creek Church of the Brethren that our most important questions arise.  What are we called to do?  Where is God leading us now?  A mission statement names who we are, why we do the things we do, and gives us an avenue to envision our future.  Thank you for your patience, your understanding, and your prayers as we seek to continue in this work.         ~ Pastor Nathan