Committeees

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by gb93433, Jul 22, 2004.

  1. gb93433

    gb93433
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    From the web address http://www.pastors.com/RWMT/default.asp?id=164&artid=7061&expand=1

    Get your people off committees and into ministry
    by Rick Warren

    Editor's note: With the summer months upon us, we're pulling some ToolBox classics from the archives.

    The most valuable asset people can give to your church is their time. If a man or woman comes to me and says, "Pastor, I have four hours a week to give to the church in ministry," the last thing I'm going to do is put him or her on some committee.

    Committees discuss while ministries do. Committees argue while ministries act. Committees maintain while ministries minister. Committees talk and consider while ministries serve and care. Committees discuss needs while ministries meet needs. We must minimize maintenance in order to maximize time for ministry.

    Maintenance is church work: budgets, buildings and organizational matters. Ministry is the work of the church. The more people you involve in maintenance decisions, the more you keep from ministry.

    We have no committees at Saddleback. We do, however, have 150 different lay ministries. Our paid staff does the maintenance, and our lay ministers appreciate that the time they volunteer is given to actual ministry.

    In streamlining your structure, it's better not to vote on ministry positions. There are several good reasons for this:

    1. It avoids personality contests and attracting people who are only interested in power or prestige.
    2. It allows new ministries time to develop slowly, out of the public spotlight.
    3. It allows new members a chance to get involved more quickly.
    4. It makes removal easier should people fail in a ministry.

    Not voting on ministry positions also allows you to respond more quickly to the Holy Spirit's leading. Once a woman came to me and said, "We need a prayer ministry."

    I said, "I agree. You're it."

    She said, "Don't I have to be elected or go through some approval process?" She had imagined having to jump through all kinds of hoops first.

    I said, "Of course not. Just announce a formation meeting in the bulletin and start it." She did.

    You shouldn't have to vote on whether or not a person can use the gifts God has given him or her in the body of Christ. I'm sure you realize how radical this approach is. In the typical church, members handle the maintenance (administration) of the church, and the pastor is supposed to do all the ministry. No wonder the church can't grow!

    Until next week,

    Rick
     
  2. Hardsheller

    Hardsheller
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    What a Novel Idea! Should raise the blood pressure of most of the members of the BB. :D
     
  3. rufus

    rufus
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    Ministries, not committees. Good Biblical Idea!

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  4. TomVols

    TomVols
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    While I agree in theory, one should ask: who then does the maintenance? Who does the budget decision making, etc? I hold to more of a Reformed view than most here, but I'd like some feedback and would be very interested to know the nuts and bolts of Saddleback's method.

    You simply HAVE to have some teams or committees. But I agree that we have too much. One of the first things I've always done at churches I serve is immediately overhaul the structure to streamline things more.
     
  5. Hardsheller

    Hardsheller
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    Tom,

    I implemented a plan similar to this years ago in a SBC Church.

    We had Ministry Teams and Support Teams

    3 Ministry Teams addressed the tasks of the Church.

    Proclamation and Worship
    Education and Nuture
    Ministry and Missions

    Support Teams provided the Maintenance

    Personnel Administration
    Financial Administration
    Facilities Support

    The Support teams were the structured teams with certain responsibilities and duties.

    The Ministry Teams were flexible and free to try new ideas, recruit new members and start new ministries without approval of the church.

    It made for a dynamic approach to Ministry!

    But most SBC Churches resist this kind of approach!
     
  6. TomVols

    TomVols
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    Yes we do, don't we. It's a power and control issue for one, and we can't upset the board of directors....ER, I mean deacons. [​IMG]
     
  7. Pastor J

    Pastor J
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    I agree whole heartedly in that we need less committees and more ministries. I also agree with Tom that there is still a need for some. We switched to more of a ministry view a couple years ago. It has been a tremendous help to the leadership of the church. It took a little while for the church to buy into it, but now, I would never go back.
     
  8. David Ekstrom

    David Ekstrom
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    I agree that some churches are too bureaucratic but some are also too authoritarian. Where's the accountability? At the very least the congregation ought to elect the church board to hold the pastor accountable.
     
  9. Hardsheller

    Hardsheller
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    Not unless there is a plan in place to hold every other member of the church accountable! I'm tired of being the only one in the church who has to answer to everybody! [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  10. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
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    You DO have ministry planning teams (elders, staff) who have the general oversight of the work.

    You DO NOT have a gajillion hours of fruitless discussion, with lay workers (remember, at Saddleback SBC every person is actively involved in ministry) having the marrow sucked out of them in mind-boggling details.

    Somebody wants to be involved in the work, let them WORK, not plan. Leave the planning to the staff with the spiritual gifts accordingly.

    I was just at Saddleback on Sunday and saw this in operation. What a joy to see people WORKING for the Lord!
     

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