AGLC LT meeting 8/16/10

Attendees:  Phil and Sally Hart, Kenn Mingus, Carl Christensen, Sue Dalbout, Patti Langsdale, Kim Saunders, Rev. Stephen Kanouse, John Nelson, Susie Henning, Nick Billardello, Nolan Clemens, Tim Draney, Jeff Trang

Kenn opened at 7:00 with a devotional on Luke 12:49-56

What went well on our first Sunday worship:

It was great to be setting up chairs just a few minutes beforehand.  

Good number of kids attended.

 Ages 1-90 attended.

 Blessing of backpacks, students, and teachers was excellent.

What can we do to make things better?

Children’s sermon

Discussion on nursery, or “cry room” – if we set the library up as a “cry room” would we need to have someone in there at all times.  We can also use the opening vestibule for this.  Nick will announce that parents should feel free to get up and walk around with a fussy child.  We want to be a family friendly church.

We need a microphone for the reader.  Sally will ask Pat at the school if we can use their wireless microphone.  Jim Perkins is Nick Tomlin’s backup guy for sound.

Patti won the “guess the attendance contest”.  She guessed 77 and we had 78.  Way to go Patti!

We need to move the tables near the door back a little.  

We need to set up round tables for coffee fellowship.  

Patti will bring a small lectern for Nick’s book on the altar.  There was some discussion about the width of the altar.  It is too small for the trays, but it is fine for common cup and bread.  We don’t want to make it wider due to space limitations.

Air conditioner – did we set it up correctly?  

We can set up at 9:30a.m. – that should give us plenty of time.

We have enough food for next week.  Make lemonade ahead of time.  Gwen Roof is hostess next week and Nolan and Pat Christensen will help.    

Suggestions from Stephen Kanouse

Pray over the chairs as they are being put up.  We could have prayer teams doing this.  Pray that God will bless the people, the church, and the community.

What is our clearly defined mission and vision statement?  Right now is the time to think about what our purpose is.  

Although a midweek bible study is planned, he also suggests that we have bible study/prayer in groups of two or three.  These groups are same gender and meet for 14 weeks studying the book of Acts two chapters at a time.  Acts is about the beginning of the church; it is the story of the Holy Spirit moving people out to start the church.  Since there are only two or three people per group, they can meet whenever and wherever is convenient for them.  The group spends ten minutes catching up with each other, 20 minutes studying scripture, and 15 minutes praying.  In studying scripture, he said to see what God is doing here, what the people of faith are doing, what lessons did the early church learn, and what is this telling us about our new emerging church.  The 15 minutes in prayer may seem excessive but we can pray for each other, our mission, lift up positive moments and praise god, pray for our leaders, our community, Texas, our country, our world leaders.  The groups are accountable to each other to be meeting once a week.  After the 14 weeks, we can arrange a mini retreat with Steve.  From this we can make a purpose statement – biblically based and focused outward.  Our statement should be 12 words or less so that anyone will know it and understand it.  One church’s purpose statement was “Making Christ Known”  for example.

Purpose statements only have a shelf life of 3-4 years.  Steve spends a lot of time on this because it focuses on what God wants us to be about and not what we want to be about.  

This doesn’t mean that our midweek bible study doesn’t need to happen.  This can be in addition to that.  

The key is to get as many people involved in the process as possible.  

We had a great start and he is thankful for our leadership.

Always be thinking of finding ways to help visitors.  Make decisions based on having guests.  

Watch the 80% rule on attendance.  When the place is 80% full, it looks full and uninviting. Add more chairs when necessary.

Move the information table back from the door a bit so it doesn’t block people.

Have people greeting and handing out bulletins.  

It might be helpful to have someone outside directing people.  Leave parking in front for guests.

Create more artwork to hang – make it “our” artwork.

Start a choir or praise team.

Put announcements in the bulletin.  He suggested putting the main informative announcements at the end of the service and worship-oriented announcements at the beginning.  He suggested having an announcement about communion.

We can move the sharing of the peace to the end of the service.  This was followed by discussion as to where in the service we should share the peace.  Nick was taught that this was an opportunity to make peace with your neighbor before coming to the communion table.

More microphones will be need as we add assistant ministers.

Play the hymn all the way through before we start singing.

Help parents with small children feel welcome.  Create worship bags with cloth books, stuffed animals, and other quiet activities.  The parents can pick them up and drop them back in a basket after service.

Add a children’s message to the order of worship.

Start planning youth activities.  Jamie Bruning at the synod office was the youth and family coordinator but is now just doing events.  She may be able to have suggestions.

Don’t be too quick to clean up after worship.

Move chairs slightly closer to the front and have two aisles instead of one aisle.  

Signage is good but Steve though the sign by Carroll needs to be larger and have “Abiding Grace Lutheran Church” bigger.

Make garbage cans more obvious.

Be aware of sound tech issues.

Keep focused on who we want to reach – keep thinking of those that we want to reach.

Report on meeting with Bishop Kevin and Stephen Kanouse  (Kenn and Phil)

Calvary will be our church of record – our records will reside at Calvary.  The synod council is the third weekend of September.  

The ROSE Document needs to be completed.  ROSE stands for Rational, Objective, Strategic plan, (how is it) Evaluated.   EOCM already knows about us – Steve has already told them.  We would like people to be able to find us on the elca.org – Steve is going to check on this.  

As we look ahead to become a Congregation under Development.  We became a SAWC because the synod can do this fairly quickly.  The next step could be congregation under development – creating a new church profile, includes a statement of purpose, vision statement, demographic work to justify the mission field, financial support for pastor developer.  The group meets in March and paperwork must be submitted earlier.  We don’t have to stay a SAWC for a long time.  In order for Nick to be ordained, we would have to be able to pay Nick half-time if he were to become pastor developer.  Is there a way to become a CUD before this March event?     We are a size to be a small congregation right now.  It is better to have 120-125 people worshiping on a regular basis to have full-time pastor.  We can be a SAWC for a short or long time.  If we don’t need a lot of support from EOCM, they would bless it and make us a congregation.  

We will start with the ROSE document.  It is best to not get grant money if it is not needed.  

Finance and Stewardship – Nolan and Carl

Nolan and Carl have an updated budget.

We need to include Christian Education in the budget.

Phil was “blown away” by the financial gifts thus far.  If we can revamp this budget, we need to look at how we can pay Nick going forward.  Please think about this and pray about this for the next meeting.  If we bring in $2000 per week, we are looking at more than $100,000 per year.

Tim asked if we should be doing anything with the “intent of giving” form that we used before.  Should we start a formal stewardship program?  

The NTNL has a Stewardship Academy which includes 3 weekends and is $175 per person to attend.  

We can redo the “intent of giving” form and do a formal stewardship drive later in the fall.  

Tim will do a temple talk this week about it.

By doing a stewardship/financial giving program, we show permanence.  

Special Music  

Sue Dalbout was just waiting to be asked and is thrilled to be the leader of this.  To start with, they can sing out of the hymnbook; her sister is a choir director and she may be able to get something from her.  She wants to start as soon as possible.  They will rehearse before or after church on Sundays.  

John is going to send a weekly reminder and put this in it.

Membership transfer process

We are all going to join AGLC.  We can either transfer our membership for join as an affirmation of baptism.  Everyone will fill out an information sheet to be a member.  We can do a charter membership and sign the charter.

Wednesday Night bible study

Kenn is going to go to Tolberts to see how loud it is.  We will start September 8.

Sunday School

Rally Day is September 12th.  This will be an intergenerational event.

We had nine children register.  Other families didn’t want to commit until they knew what we were going to do.

Business cards, postcard mailing – tabled until next meeting.

Steve mentioned that we should have our mailings be as “first class” as possible.  Don’t make them cheesy – use high gloss paper with multi color.  Rule of thumb is that people need to receive something 7 times before they pay attention to it.

Newspaper ads and article

It is about $28 a week for all three newspapers in the area – GV Courier, etc -- ask Dee to do this.  Commit for 3 months starting as soon as possible.

God so loved the world….and so do we   you are invited is one example.

The LW vote

Rev. Jane Mar and Stephanie Varnum will be at last vote at LW.  Kenn and Phil will also attend to hand out AGLC info to those interested.

Youth stuff -- Nick

Nick wants to get the youth together.  He will announce something.

Kenn will talk to Jim Perkins about working with youth.  

Set up Sunday is at 9:30.

Next meeting Monday 7:00 pm

Tim closed with prayer at 9:26