Hello and love to each of you as we move right into February 2015. I am so
glad we are all part of the Community of Faith here at Forestville United
Methodist. As the Apostle Paul says in his letter to the church in a city called
Ephesus, we are all being equipped as God’s people to serve with heartfelt love
and compassion, so that as the Body of Christ, we will experience unity and be
filled with knowledge and attain to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
I am paraphrasing a little bit but that’s how he describes our journey together!
Because we are on such an awesome transformational path together, you can
imagine my delight, as your appointed spiritual leader, when at the January
retreat, our top Core Values as a faith community were identified.
Our top three Core Values as a Church Community are:
*To be a welcoming church with open hearts and open minds – Core Value:
All are welcome.*
Outreach to the community – Core Value: Everyone is important.
Service and compassion, Justice
Nurturing our relationship with God – Core Value: Seeing all that we do as Worship:
prayer, service, formal worship, mentoring, Bible study, training leaders,
teaching . . .
And why, you might ask, did identifying our Core Values make me so uproaringly
pleased? Because.. as two authors, M. MacGregor and M. Parmer summarize:
CORE VALUES answer really, really important questions:
*What do we stand for?
What are we all about?
What makes us different from other congregations?*
A congregation’s distinctive “personality”, culture, very nature and its priorities
Values are deeply held by the congregation and have been demonstrated in
Values are actual, not aspirational.
Values are in close alignment with the congregation’s sense of purpose.
Values guide decision making.
Values guide goal setting, ministry priorities, budgets, best use of human
and material resources.
Lay the Foundation for Vision.
God given vision for the future is best discerned when a congregation has clarity
about what it values, then seeks God’s guidance and blessing to build a vision
based on its mission and positive values.
Touch the heart, elicit strong emotions, and are important to parishioners
Define a congregation’s culture.
Love and Blessings as we live into our Core Values together!