Over the past six months, we’ve been blessed by the efforts of the Mission Staffing Exploration Team* (MSET), the group that was charged by the congregation to propose a staffing configuration that would best support the mission of Prince of Peace. A group that represented the diversity of our community was convened last summer and began by looking deeply at how we go about the variety of ministry tasks and how we’re called to be in service to God’s world. We quickly realized the need to expand upon our existing mission, moving beyond understanding ‘who we are’ and towards ‘what we are to be about.’ This led to the following expanded sense of our mission and vision:
We are claimed, gathered and sent to build the Church and love the World. We will realize this mission as we 1) deepen our sense of how God’s story and activity shape life and 2) co-create with God to practice transforming love in the world.
Allowing our work to be shaped by this description, the MSET was able to objectively consider alternatives for aligning our staff roles to better serve this mission and vision. As a result, we were able to create the space necessary to imagine how God could work through a re-designed staffing configuration to help us become a more effective community of faith, located here in the heart of Roseville. After a lengthy, investigatory and listening period, a new staffing configuration was presented to the full congregation at its semi-annual meeting on January 28. The gathered assembly voted strongly in favor to accept the report and recommendations of the MSET and now the work begins to fill the positions identified in the first phase of implementing the configuration.
The immediate good news is that two of the key positions are already filled. Erika Coe will continue to serve as a part-time Youth Director, integrating ministry with our Junior and High School youth within the broader faith formation efforts of the church. And I will continue to serve as your called Lead Pastor with some re-aligning and re-imaging of how my role will be shaped in relation to the rest of the ministry leadership teams.
I now look forward to the addition of some key pastoral leaders. First, the position that will prove to be my primary collaborator in ministry will be the Associate Pastor for Faith Formation. Recognizing this congregation’s underlying desire to build up and strengthen its life in faith, a re-imagined focus on spiritual development across the generations will be the primary task of our pastoral leaders. We also expect to see this faith formation work carried out in a manner that’s fully integrated into our worship, education, community-care and service lives.
Supporting our efforts and acknowledging the shifting demographics of our congregation, we’ll also be adding a position for a part-time Visitation and Congregational Care Pastor. This leader will be tending to the increasing opportunity we have to offer care, love and support to folks as life takes new twists and turns. As the past 16 months of working with Interim Congregational Care Pastors Marilyn and Lynn has shown, the elders of our congregation are finding an increased need for connectivity to our community in this way. Supported by the Associate Pastor and myself, what a gift it will be to have someone dedicated to our ministry in this way.
The call and contracting processes for both of these pastoral positions is slightly different and we’re now actively recruiting members to serve on our call and interview committees. The congregation will be asked to formally elect the members of the call committee for the Associate Pastor position. An interview committee supported by the Personnel Committee will conduct the search for the Visitation & Congregational Care Pastor, which the council will formally covenant for ministry. Deacon Krista Lind of the St. Paul Area Synod will be supporting Prince of Peace through the selection process for both positions.
Please join me in praying that God continue to guide and shape our efforts and all the deliberations to come. And in giving thanks for all the prior work that has led us to this point. I couldn’t be more excited about our future and am anxious to discover who will be joining us in the next chapter of our story.
*Please join me in thanking the members of MSET: Barb Burkhardt (Chair), Christer Cederberg, Erika Coe, Maria Larson, Michelle Moore, Amy Skare-Klecker, and Michael Stetlzer.