Here is a brief summary of the issues discussed at the Congregation Council meeting on March 8:

  • Congregational Meeting Review – Council members shared their individual perspectives on the congregational meeting.  This discussion centered on the need to assure that our planning includes all of the challenges and opportunities raised by members at the congregational meeting.     
  • Caterpillar Work Group Update –  Rick Rothausen reported to the Council that he reached out to Monarch Healthcare Management, to continue discussions about Caterpillar staying open until Prince of Peace or another entity can obtain a license.  At the time of the Council meeting Rick had no clear response from Monarch.           
  • Liberating Structures Project – The Council reviewed three planned activities designed to move us in the direction of streamlining our structures and improving our ability to build the church and love the world.
  • Values Conversations –  Each week during lent we will hold conversations about the core values that describe Prince of Peace.  We will use these conversations to shape statements about our values that can then be used to help us set priorities and tell our story to the broader community.  In discussion of this process, Council members were encourage to personally invite people to participate.  
  • May 14 Congregational Renewal Retreat – This workshop was originally conceived as a way to bring leaders from all existing and potential ministries of Prince of Peace together to share information, coordinate efforts, and discuss possible changes to our governing structures and processes. With all the challenges we now face, however, the scope of the workshop has expanded to include a deeper look at the challenges and opportunities that were raised at the congregational meeting.
  • Budget Development Process – With all of the challenges and opportunities we now face we need to get a head start on our budgeting process.  The finance committee will meet soon to plan a process that give us an annual budget based on the ministries and priorities that emerge from our evolving ministries.  One part of that process is to develop multiple budget models that can help us assess the impact of several “what ifs”.  Another part of the budgeting plan is likely to be a budgeting workshop help a week or two following the May 14 leadership renewal workshop.  That would provide an opportunity to develop budget estimates for any new directions that come from the May 14th workshop.

In this discussion, President Stetzler presented a “test case” for how our governing structures might be reconfigured for greater clarity and efficiency.  James Ericksen informed the Council that a water heater needs to be replaced.  Although the cost is within the amount budgeted for repair and replacement, a choice must be made about the size of water heater.  In the past, a choice like this would have been brought to the Council for a decision because it requires a choice about future programming that the property committee didn’t feel authorized to make.  In this case, the consensus opinion of the Council was that James should consult with any other in the congregation whom he feels have relevant information and opinions and then make the decision.  The outcome of this particular example may be useful in shaping our future structure and processes.