District SPRC Workshop: Pastor/Staff/Parish Relations Committee. Rev. Timothy J. Russell, Assistant to the Bishop Presenter. Who is a member of the Staff / Pastor Parish Relations Committee? 5-9 professing members of a local charge
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Pastor/Staff/Parish Relations Committee
Rev. Timothy J. Russell, Assistant to the Bishop
5-9 professing members of a local charge
At least one member shall be a young adult and one member may be a youth
In addition, the lay leader and a lay member of AC are members
Organized into three classes
The Chair and members are nominated by the Committee
on Lay Leadership and elected by the Charge Conference.
Members of the pastor’s or a staff member’s family are
ineligible to serve.
Only one person from the same household may serve.
Each church on a charge must have representation.
and respect the pastor(s) and staff
and their family
2. To promote unity in the church(es) Relations
Prioritizing The Work Of Ministry Relations
Helping your church reach its fullest potential
and every generation.
administration, pastoral care, overseeing staff,
and much more.
No pastor will excel in every area of ministry and it
would be unrealistic to expect otherwise. Also, the
needs of the local church will vary from place to
place and over time the results of what the church
needs in a pastor will vary.
It is helpful then, to establish some goals for
prioritizing the work of ministry.
into 10 major areas. It is important for the pastor
and the S/PPRC to explore these areas and
determine a priority of importance for them.
It is suggested that the pastor and the S/PPRC spend
time working together to establish this order of
Ministry areas: Relations
Spiritual Preparation: Personal prayer, Bible Study,
spiritual retreats, reading for spiritual growth,
receiving spiritual direction, self-care.
organizing and planning worship service, creating
inspiring worship, attention to issues such as the
pace and energy of the worship service, assisting
persons to participate in worship, administration
of the sacraments, etc.
required paperwork, reviewing and revising policies
and procedures, organizing the church, intentional
day-to-day involvement in the financial and facilities
operation of the church, etc.
as a spiritual director, encouraging those in the church
to grow in their faith, challenging people to tithe,
expanding the number of small groups and/or
Sunday School classes, etc.
church to help those in need, participating in
local and /or foreign mission trips, challenging
the church to take seriously the needs of the
homeless, hungry, lower income persons, and
those in poverty or prison.
not yet participating in the life of the church,
challenges the church to reach those not active
in a church, clearly presents the salvation message
of Jesus to others, trains and equips people in the
church to share their faith with others, etc.
counseling, caring ministry, funerals, contacting
for it, identifying, equipping, and developing
emerging laity leaders, providing a strong sense
of direction for the ministries of the church,
hands on management of staff, casting vision, etc.
and task groups for the denomination, mentoring
candidates for ministry, attending denominational
meetings, expressing leadership beyond the local
expressions of ministry that may create a priority
for the pastor. This could be a preschool in which
the pastor is expected to participate in supervision
of staff and providing weekly chapel experience,
a large ministry to homeless persons in which the
pastor is expected to serve etc.
“Okay, We’ve got that part Relations
covered. We have helped the
pastor prioritize ministry.”
Ministry Assessment Relations
And Development Planning Tools
The Ministry Assessment and Development Tool
is an instrument designed to accomplish two goals:
Step I: The Assessment Document is distributed
to committee members for their
Step II: Committee members bring
completed assessment documents
to a meeting where a consensus
document will be completed
outside the pastor’s presence.
Step III: The pastor and committee members
will compare the pastor’s self- assessment and
the committee’s consensus document. Then
the Development Plan will be created.
Step IV: A copy of the committee consensus
document, the pastor’s self assessment, and
the development action plan is mailed to
The District Office.
Three possible ratings: Relations
The focus of this process is assessment. Relations
The process is not about personality, but
effectiveness and developing a plan to be
helpful to the pastoral leadership and
The Goal is to agree upon a focused and shared ministry with a mutual covenant to glorify God in every way.
10 Areas to assess. Relations
where improvement is needed. . . .
is a covenant between the Pastor and
the S/PPRC, designed to benefit the
church. It’s purpose is to improve
the effectiveness of the pastor
and in turn, the overall ministry of
the nature and function of ministry in The
United Methodist Church regarding open
itinerancy, the preparation for ordained ministry,
and the Ministerial Education Fund.
and titles for associate pastors and other staff
members in cooperation with the senior pastor.
The term associate pastor is used as a general
term to indicate any pastoral appointment in
the local church other than the pastor in charge
(see par. 339). Committees shall be encouraged
to develop specific titles for associate pastors
that reflect the job descriptions and expectations.
continuing education and spiritual renewal, to
arrange with the church council for the necessary
time and financial assistance for the attendance
of the pastor and/or staff at such continuing
education and spiritual renewal events as may
serve their professional and spiritual growth, and
to encourage staff members to seek professional
certification in their fields of specialization.
recommend annually to the charge conference
lay preachers and persons for candidacy for
ordained ministry (see BOD 247.8 and 310),
and to enlist and refer to the General Board
of Global Ministries persons for candidacy for
on S/PPR shall be present during the consideration
of a candidacy application or renewal for a member
of their immediate family. The committee shall provide
to the charge conference a list of students from the
charge who are preparing for ordained ministry,
diaconal ministry, and/or missionary, and shall maintain
contact with these students, supplying the charge
conference with a progress report on each student.
10. To interpret preparation for ordained ministry
and the Ministerial Education Fund to the
members of the staff if it should become evident
that the best interests of the charge and the
pastor(s) will be served by a change of pastor(s).
The committee shall cooperate with the pastor(s),
the district superintendent, and the bishop in
securing clergy leadership. Its relationship to the
district superintendent and the bishop shall be
Annual Evaluation (due December 1st)
Charge Profile (due December 1st)
Consultation (January – March)
Introductory Visit (April – May)
Appointment Core Values Relations
1. The Church is the body of Christ.
2. The work we are doing is the
work of God.
3. Don’t reward mediocrity.
4. The needs of the local church are priority.
All that we do and consider will be bathed in prayer.
Church Profiles & Clergy Profiles will be used to match the needs of the church with abilities of the clergy. Make sure your profile is accurate.
Long term appointments are key to healthy congregations.
We will work towards moving only those clergy who want to move or must move due to the request of the church.
Interim pastors will be used to address patterns of dysfunction on the part of a local congregation.
Ineffectiveness on the part of a clergy person will be dealt with by remedial action or suspension.
consultation with the pastor, the professional
and other staff positions (whether employee
or contract) needed to carry out the work of
the church or charge. The committee and the
pastor shall recommend to the church council
a written statement of policy and procedures
regarding the process for hiring, contracting,
evaluating, promoting, retiring, and dismissing
staff personnel who are not subject to
episcopal appointment as ordained clergy.
and the pastor shall have the authority to hire, contract,
evaluate, promote, retire and dismiss non-appointed
When persons are hired or contracted, consideration
shall be given to the training qualifications and
certification standards set forth by the general Church
agency to which such positions are related. The
committee shall further recommend to the church
council a provision for adequate health and life
insurance and severance pay for all lay employees.
the church council provide; effective on and after
January 1, 2006, 100% vested pension benefits
of at least 3% of compensation for lay employees
of the local church who work at least
20 hours/week, are at least 21 years of age, and have
at least one year of permanent service. The
church council shall have authority to provide
such pension benefits through either a
nondenominational pension program administered
by the General Board of Pension and Health
Benefits or another pension program administered
by another pension provider.
the size of the employed staff of the charge makes
it desirable, the establishment of a personnel
committee. This committee shall be composed of
such members S/PPRC as it may designate and such
additional members as the charge conference may
14. To educate the church community on the value
of diversity of selection in clergy and lay staff
and develop a commitment to same.
informed of personnel matters in relationship
to the Church’s policy, professional standards,
liability issues, and civil law. They are responsible
for communicating and interpreting such matters
to staff. Committee members should make
themselves available for educational, and
training opportunities provided by the conference,
the district, and/or other arenas that will enable
them to be effective in their work.
proposals for compensation, travel expense,
vacation, health and life insurance, pension, housing
(which may be a church-owned parsonage or
housing allowance in lieu of a parsonage if in
compliance with the policy of the annual conference)
and other practical matters affecting the work and
families of the pastor and staff, and to make annual
recommendations regarding such matters to the
church council, and reporting budget items to the
pastor’s family as the property of the church and
by the church as a place of privacy for the pastor’s
family. The chairperson of the S/PPRC , the
chairperson of the board of trustees, and the pastor
shall make an annual review of the church owned
parsonage to assure proper maintenance.
Marie Ebner von Eschenbach
THE END Relations