Several months ago, one of the church elders approached my husband Bob and arranged to meet for breakfast to discuss his willingness to be considered for the job of church elder at our church. My husband was very surprised, humbled and agreed to meet. Tim explained the elder job responsibilities and the qualifications and then they proceeded to begin the process of consideration. My husband prayed and carefully considered the commitment. This is a good season of life for my husband to take on this responsibility. Eric will be on his own at college next year, Bob's job is secure and manageable and he can invest the time and energy into this role. It may impact his golfing time, but otherwise he has the time to give now.
At our church, we are an elder led congregation. What that means is we are not part of a denomination like Catholic or Methodist where we have a large organization setting the vision and plans for our local church. Our church, Faith Community Church of Hopkinton is an elder led, staff run church and we are independent - meaning we have no direct ties to any other church or denomination. We are a large church by New England standards but small by US or world wide standards. We have about 800 people come to worship services each Sunday and the church directory has over 1,000 names.
As an independent church, and based on our churches organization, we have a group of church members (elders) set the direction and vision for the church and the staff is given autonomy to execute that direction. So the elders make the plans and the staff does the work to make it happen. It's a lot like a board of directors. For our church, all the elders are church members and 'lay people.' That means they didn't go to seminary nor are they paid to do the job. From what I can tell, it is a big job. There are 5 elders and they make many of the decisions including reviewing the performance and giving direction to our senior pastor.
So, this is a big thing for Bob to be asked to do. It's a four year assignment and includes regular meetings, yearly retreats and a whole bunch of other stuff. The church votes on the elders and my husband was whole-heartedly affirmed in this role last Sunday at the church meeting. This past Thursday he went to his first elder meeting. He came home with his head spinning. As he said, there is a whole lot of stuff the elders do and go through, behind the scenes. Llast night we had a nice evening with all the elders (out-going and in-coming) and their families. As a 4 year assignment, there were several elders that had finished their term and Bob coming in new to the term so the elder chairman and his wife hosted a lovely dinner for us all. There were probably 18 of us in their lovely home.
I am excited about Bob's new role. I know he will do very well. He is very careful and wise in considering issues and he is eager to seek God's will for our church congregation. I pray that he will be confident in his role and serve with excellence.
In my usual tradition, I put together a pack of hand-made cards to give to the hostess. Below are a few of the cards in her pack that you haven't seen before.
Thanks for stopping by today. Have a great day.