Monday, June 1, 2009

We have something to share!

This past Saturday, May 30, the Steering Committee of our new church plus some other folks met on Retreat to come up with the Purpose Statement for our new congregation.

It was a wonderful day. We met at Presbyterian Homes in North Oaks. Many of us remarked that we want to live at North Oaks at the appropriate time in our life.

Our group worked hard on Saturday. After a brief mixer, I shared a guided reading on the story of Jesus healing the paralytic. I then went over a document I wrote on the importance of developing a Purpose Statement. That document is posted on-line at: After that I shared a Bible Study on the importance of developing and being disciples.

Newell Krogmann, pastor of The Presbyterian Church in Le Sueur, led the rest of the Retreat. He facilitated three exercises. In the first we talked about what God’s dreams are for our new church; in the second we talked about the community needs that we see; in the third we each talked about what give us passion as individuals in our service to this new church. All of our discussion was written on white butcher paper that was posted on the walls of the room where we met.

Then we started writing Purpose Statements. We broke up into two groups—each group wrote some Purpose Statements. We then came back as a group and decided to focus on one Purpose Statement. We spent some time wordsmithing that one and came up with a Purpose Statement.

The Purpose Statement that we developed on Saturday is:
“We strive to be an authentic, Christian community where:
strangers become friends
friends become disciples
disciples impact the world”

We are not done with our process. The Steering Committee of our new church is meeting on Thursday, June 18 to vote on the final Purpose Statement. Until then we are going to spend some time sharing the above Purpose Statement with people, receiving feedback, and then possibly incorporating the feedback into the final Purpose Statement.

The group who met this past Saturday couldn’t find a time before June 18th where we could all gather to discuss further refinements of the Purpose Statement. So instead of meeting in person, we are going to have E-mail conversation about the feedback we receive. The Steering Committee will receive a copy of this feedback.

If you are reading this blog, you can help us. Would you share your feedback in the comments section of this blog? The comments section is at the end of this blog. Hit the comments link and fire away. All feedback is welcome—as long as it is civil. As I shared in a blog I wrote on May 28, I want us to have a “white-hot Purpose Statement.” Your feedback could help increase the temperature!!! Please share your thoughts.

Thanks to everyone who was praying for us this past Saturday. I believe your prayers made a difference.

A special thanks to the folks who volunteered their time on a beautiful Saturday in May to contribute to this Purpose Statement. I am humbled that this group has come so far in such a short amount of time.

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