...are the ones that make the biggest difference


Hello, Mr. President

This morning, I have an appointment to call the president. No, not that president; the president of our denomination. At the urging of my father-in-law, who is head of international missions for the denomination and was a pastor for many years, and my uncle-in-law, who once was the president and was also a pastor for many years, I am going to bring up some of the issues I have detailed here in the past, as well as issues related to my termination. I'm a little uncomfortable doing this - not because the matters don't need to be raised & addressed - but because it seems almost like tattling. Sort of an "I'm going to tell my mom on you!" kind of thing. If I didn't have some genuine concerns about the way this place is governed and the failure to develop & mentor me, a brand-spanking-new pastor, I wouldn't be doing this.

The problem, though, is that this denomination has functioned for a very long time in a laissez-faire way towards her churches. The churches are largely independent; this is highlighted by the fact the denominational headquarters is called the "resource center." But the denomination is growing, both through church plants (several over the last few years) and established churches abandoning their denomination (mostly Mennonites sick of the liberalism), and there seems to be a sense that perhaps the denominational leadership needs to take a stronger hand in working with local churches. The denomination licenses their pastors (licensed pastors get a significant federal tax break), funds much of their construction/expansion projects through a specialty ministry, provides a summer camp for the kids, and provides a variety of other services - it seems like the denomination should have more of a hand in ensuring her churches are following a biblical structure, ie, having more than 3 elders, developing & mentoring new pastors and generally being wise stewards of the money the denomination has entrusted to them. Though I won't be around for it, it will be interesting to see how all this plays out.

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