Deacons

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by msinave, Apr 15, 2004.

  1. msinave

    msinave
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    First,I'm not a pastor but want advice and thought this would be the best place. My husband and I have recently become concerned with the deacons and the selection process at our church. Brief history: pastor resigned 12/31 to take mission related job, which we know is his "true" calling. Don't get me wrong, church family is great and people are really stepping up to fill the gaps. I guess my main concerns are:

    we have a church of 1000 with average 500 attendance. We have a Monday night visitation event, which so far averages about 6 people (pitiful, isn't it?) Only one deacon attends regularly and another when his job allows.

    each deacon is assigned a small number of families to whom he is supposed to minister. In four years, we've heard from our deacon once. Some people (including the youth assistant!) didn't even know they had their "own" deacon because they have NEVER been contacted.

    having recently read the bylaws, we realize that they have not been followed in the deacon selection process in the years we've been at the church. there has been no interviewing or investigation (for lack of better word) of prospective deacons. rather, it's been mostly a "popularity-type" vote.

    So here's our question. What can we, as laypeople, do to:

    1) inspire the deacons to do that to which they have been committed?

    2) ensure that the bylaws are followed in future deacon selection or even (Gulp!)...

    3) get the bylaws changed to ensure more accountability from the deacons?

    Thanks for any advise.
     
  2. Circuitrider

    Circuitrider
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    Do you have an assistant pastor who is acting as interim or some other leadership within the church? You and your husband might begin by contacting whoever is in charge of things and discuss your concerns with him. Remember that sugar is much more palatable than vinegar. Like Daniel make an appeal to those in leadership to make the changes you listed. Also make it a matter of concerted prayer for those in charge. If nothing happens from your request you might have to wait until a new pastor comes and then take your appeal to him.


    Hope this helps. ;)
     
  3. msinave

    msinave
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    Thanks for responding but part of the problem is we don't know who to go to. The only staff we have right now is our youth minister and music minister. altho the YM is really on fire, I don't know if the "establishment" would listen to him. He doesn't mind too much stepping on toes about attending worship service but don't know if he or the MM would really have any influence on the deacons. The only other person "running" the church IS and has been a deacon for years, not to mention co-founder of the church and author of the bylaws!
     
  4. Circuitrider

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    If you cannot make headway with this key deacon, then you may just have to wait until you have a pastor so that you can go to him with this appeal. Remember, "The kings heart in the hand of the Lord...." Praying for the right opportunity and demonstrating the right spirit of appeal are keys to seeing positive change.

    Have a great day. [​IMG]
     
  5. go2church

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    You could make a stink, but is there a problem with the deacons currently serving? Try bringing this up the next time there is a deacon selection
     
  6. Bob Farnaby

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    First, thank God for a large congregation of His people

    Then pray for your deacons.

    Would suggest talking with 'your' deacon about your concerns .. doesn't need to be challenging, can be friendly, supportive approach.

    Is the contact not being done at all? or is it being followed in an informal way on Sundays at church rather than a special formal visit? I know that at our church a lot of low level care is give in this manner and more specific work is done with those who have greater nees.


    as for changing the bye laws, be careful and think long ad deep as to what they should show. Many churches are reluctant to do significant changes when they have no pastor.

    Regards
    Bob
     
  7. GODzThunder

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    Really if you have a problem with one of the deacons of the Church and you have no pastor at the time then you need to go to another deacon, perferably the chairman of the deacons (hoping that he is not the chairman).
     
  8. dianetavegia

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    I'd begin by getting a list of every deacon and sending them a card on a rotating basis letting them know that you're praying for them this week as a family, that you know that the job of a deacon can be a daunting task and that since the church is so large and their list of families is probably pretty large that you'd be more than happy to assist them by checking in on new members, calling on those in the hospital or any other way they might need you. By doing this, the deacons are now aware that you are aware of their 'jobs' and it's between them and the Lord.

    You might also ask whomever is in charge at your church (interim or assistant pastor) if you can head up a 'deacon appreciation Sunday' with a meet and greet time after service. The jobs of a deacon could be listed along with their names in the church bulletin. You could ask other ladies to help with desserts and coffee or ice cream for a social. Again, the deacons will be made aware that they DO have jobs that need to be done and again it's up to the Holy Spirit to convict them and them to respond to that conviction by either doing their job or resigning.

    Our church has 'Deacons of the Week' and if someone has a need, those deacons names and contact numbers are published in our weekly communicator. We aren't actually assigned to a deacon.

    If it makes you feel better, we also are in a church of just under 1,100 and only have about 30 come to visitation with maybe 5 deacons in attendance. Our visitation is Tuesday night, every other week at 7:00 p.m. Many of our men are not home from work by then and do their visiting on Saturdays. Most of our deacons teach Sunday School and some work with the youth or AWANA programs. A number of them help in VBS in some capacity.

    Diane
     
  9. SaggyWoman

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    The last church I attended, I don't think I saw one deacon at or near Bible School. What is that?? So much for "men who are called out." Kick them out.
     
  10. pinoybaptist

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    Deacons are not 'called out' as are men in the ministry like preachers, evangelists, or teachers. They are selected as men 'filled with the holy spirit' and with the same criteria as pastors. But I guess we all know that.

    Way I see it, like the sister said, the Lord was not in the selection process, the flesh was. So, I guess just about the only thing anyone can do in that situation is wait for the next election, er, selection.
     
  11. gb93433

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    Start recruting people to join you. It is not the job of a few to do it all. It is the job of everyone who is able.
     

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