“Major Concerns”

These are the seven very important areas I cover with pastors after going over the areas where they have questions, and character and connections with our Lord. Perhaps some of them will provoke questions or even make you wonder how the coaching relationship could work.

For Overview (click here)

To search for content under each area:

1. Click on the desired area under ‘MAJOR CONCERNS” category to the right.
2. Enter a key word in the search box.

ANNUAL REVIEW OF A PASTOR

Everyone on one of the committees would grade the pastor from 1 to 7 before the meeting. Six or seven is wonderful. Four or five is good. Obviously 1 to 3 is poor and cause for action and improvement.

We should meet ahead of time to compare grades and come up with one main grade given with the unity of the committee. That way they’re not arguing about their feelings or grades in the actual meeting with the pastor.

“MAJOR CONCERNS”

1.  Personal
Our pastor teaches well and works hard at both sermons and lessons. 1-7

Our pastor leads well and has vision for the church and carefully brings others on to the team and with unity. 1-7

Our pastor shepherds well and has a system of caring through the groups and also shows love individually to people. And from the pulpit. 1-7

Our pastor seems to have a good schedule to attack each week, covering the essentials of administration and care and study and pastoring and discipling. 1-7

2.  Staff
There seems to be a good organization of staff, and other staff in addition to the pastor have their assignments and do well as a team. 1-7

Even areas that are not prominent roles of pastors or directors are covered by the staff and buy a strong volunteer managers. 1-7

3.  The board
There is clear definition about what is the pastor and staff role and what is the board’s role in church ministries and organization. 1-7

There a strong unity and direction between the pastor and the board. 1-7

Board meetings are well organized and stay on target. 1-7

4.  Love
Our pastor shows love to the people and they know it – both privately and publicly. 1-7

5.  Preaching
Our pastor explains the meaning of the text, and preaches with exposition of what God meant when He had it written. 1-7

Our pastor shows that he really means it when he preaches. It has obviously gripped his own heart. 1-7

Our pastor uses strong appeal to our own hearts, so that we leave wanting to do what has been said in the Scriptures. 1-7

6.  Groups
There is clarity about the purpose of groups in the church, and the various kinds do not compete with each other but meet needs. 1-7

Our pastor has his own discipleship or camaraderie or accountability group. 1-7

7.  Mission
As strong values in the Pastor keeps them in front of the people. 1-7

We have a strong presence in our community as well as strong care for worldwide missions. 1-7

Everyone knows they were strong and a integrity In our pastors life and with our church practices. 1-7

Suggestions I have for our pastor: _________________________

Ways we can help our pastor better: _________________________

Are we providing adequate and strong financial resources, salary, and time away? ___________________

What hopes does our pastor have for better church-pastor relationships? ___________________

Preparing a worship service and sermon with people in mind and heart!

The grand teacher of homiletics, Haddon Robinson, always taught that you should plan your sermon by (make-believe or real) sitting around a table with a 14-year-old, a widow,  a divorced person, married couple, young person, and an older retired person. I think he said five or six people.

The much less famous and less adequate student and sometimes teacher of homiletics, my wife’s husband, always emphasizes that there are three kinds of people sitting in the room and we must be conscious of all three for the whole service!

  1. A strong believer who is there rain or shine and believes everything in the Bible even when he cannot understand it and follows Christ. Your wife would be one of those,  and so would I.  Preach to us.
  2. The person who makes it to church one out of four if possible and  thinks he maybe believes in Christ most times I think perhaps.  How many of these are at your church?  We certainly do not know.  But we must preach to them also (and plan the service with them in mind also).
  3. The person unsure of just about everything who is  checking out the church that day.    We wish there were more them and want to preach and plan so people who are 1 and 2  are eager to invite friends who are 3s.
  4. The person church-shopping who just got disgruntled at another church because he was #1 and the church aimed for #3 or vice-versa.

🙂   I am not including #4 in our planning,  real as it is.

My experience in planning my own sermons and when I helped to plan the worship service, and set the direction for it, is that it is easy to think of only one of those groups.  Maybe two.

My experience in coaching pastors the last nine years is that it is easy and natural to lean toward either group 1 or group 3,  and hard to try to touch all three.  Sometimes that is related to the age or the conversion day of the captain of the ship,  but often it is just habit and sometimes a blind spot.

A good heart study and then staff discussion and then board subject might be to discuss how to connect with and at least  be conscious of the people in groups 1-3   (and perhaps,  for another day, your strategy or suggestions for those in group 4).

What do you think?

 

Executive Pastor On Large Church Staff

Every situation is different, a little, but there are some advantages to a
strong team joining the lead pastor to form the “office of the executive
pastor” instead of having one person do that.

Definitions
Senior or lead pastor: the leader of staff, the pastor-in-chief, the CEO of the church and staff.

Executive pastor: often the co-leader of staff, the vice-president, the COO of the church and staff.

The board: hopefully they are overseers who care for the boundaries of the church (see“The Soccer Field” papers) and allow the staff to “play on the infield.” They call and review the senior pastor, who leads and reviews (or has a system for this)_ the others on the staff.

They could be listed first here, because the senior pastor reports to them.

Administrative pastor or director of administration: often the leader of the financial and facilities side of the ministries and church.

Associate or senior associate pastors: others who lead ministries and have a segment of the ministries as their responsibility. In a large church each will have assistant pastors and directors of areas of ministry reporting to them.
Three main options for the role and duties of the executive
pastor:

1. Executive or senior associate pastor.

+ It is clear who manages the ministries at the direction of the senior.

+ If this person is loyal to the senior and understands the enabling role, this can work well.

– Sometimes the senior loses touch with staff, by “moving upstairs,” and there is a different mood and direction, sometimes even without the senior’s realization.

– There can be bottleneck at this one person’s desk, and lack of synergy and the creativity and chemistry that can come with a stronger and larger team approach to leadership thinking.

– Sometimes the person who is good at the “executive” role is not built with a “pastor’s heart,” and is just a good manager or executive,  therefore hurting themood and ministry.

2. Three or four associate pastors or senior associates who join with the senior pastor to be the leadership team

+ More staff leaders own the leadership visions and dreams. Closer to “a multitude of counselors.”

+ With four or five on the dream-and-envision-and-assign team, there is more creativity and perspective. This is enhanced when one or more on this leadership team (I simply called ours “ETeam”) are women.

+ The same people who join the senior pastor to dream and envision with him will be the ones to carry it out in their areas of ministry. They will not be one step separated from the development of the goals. All of the reports on staff, even a very large one, come under the responsibilities of the members of this team.

+ One of the members can be the worship pastor, who usually has strong influence on the mood and direction of the church — if that person is more than an artist.

+ One of the members of this team can be a director over finances and facilities, which are always involved in dreams and plans for the church — but only if that administrative leader is not a “bean-counter” who cannot pray and dream well.

+ One of these senior associates or associates can still be the #2 person, and known as such, “first among equals” among the associates. This can help in carrying out plans. (Sometimes this person is called the senior associate pastor and the others the associate pastors. Some of us think the title “executive pastor” can be perceived as more executive

–colder in one way — than pastoral — warmer.)

– There are more than two people to make the meeting and to spend the time.

– There can be negative feelings of others on staff because they are not asked to be on this leadership team.

– There can be more arguments or pushback to the senior because there are more people to do that (though I think this is an advantage, to consider all angles).

– Sometimes there are not three or four other strong leaders-dreamers on the staff (though perhaps this calls for the development of them).

3. Everyone reports to the senior pastor or, in some churches,
to the board.

+ This is the way it should be (reporting to the pastor) when there are one or four or five others on the staff.

+ The leadership plan is clear and simple.

– If there are more than four reporting to the senior pastor, he has too
many reports.

– If any staff other than the pastor reports to the board, count on
confusion and frustration. All staff must report to the leader who is there
with them every day and giving his life and heart to this church in a loving
and careful way.

5 Important Habits of a Healthy Chuch

5     5 Important Habits of a Healthy Church Download

Handout – Traits of a Healthy Church and Acts 20 -Attachment

1. Grace: enjoying what God does for us.

Be able to explain the     “CROSS”                                 Some really can’t.
Put the    CROSS     in all sermons.                                There is time.
Stand as a fellow    strugglers    .                                    Not all right.

2. Worship: exalting God and His Word.

Place the    sermon     as top priority.                            Not maybe.
Differentiate between “God says” and “I think.”         Billy is right.
Plan so emotions have time too.                                     No jump starts.

3. Community: enlisting people in groups.

Proclaim the good of three.
Plan structures for care and growth. Unstructured too.        Don’t just count on it.
Model it!                                                                                        Talk and walk.

4. Mission: emphasizing why we are here.

Write and communicate a    mission     statement.
Philosophy too.     Free     people to carry it out.                     Busy, busy. busy…
Who are these 10%?
Consider 50-50!                                                                             Wow!

5. Integrity: encouraging “    oneness    

Confront own “HEART”     defects    !                                       Top priority.
Nurture and confront other    leaders    .                                  Part of the job

Personal Ministries of the Pastor

Personal Ministries of the Pastor-Download

Personal Ministries of the Pastor-1Principles or procedures so Hebrews 13:17 is true:

1. Senior either does all three or envisions and implements.

2. Main board co-owns vision, gives boundaries, approves policies, supports with prayer and personal embrace.

3. An Executive Pastor or small team leads and manages strategy.

4. Other staff lead in their specialty areas but manage in accord with senior and board leading. If not using same playbook, they must leave the team.

5. Various director or pastors on staff:
Administrative areas—major on “leading” circle, but more management and       administration to be sure.
Age-specific ministries—major on shepherding and teaching in sub-groups.

6. Support staff cares for details and administration with some DNA of leaders.

7. The church follows the biblical call to support leadership and do ministry as the church gathered “out there.”

GROUPS

ABF book coverSunday Adult Bible Fellowships
Home Adult Bible Fellowships

 Sunday and Home Life Groups
Grace Groups
Small Groups
House Churches
and more


 Electives
Entry Groups
Membership Classes

“Belong to a group, you belong to the church.”

Easily an area of confusion and yawning!

Topics 

  1. Experiences of Church
  2. Importance of ABFs/Groups
  3. Not a Sunday School
  4. Organization of an ABF
  5. ABF/Group Leaders Job Descriptions
  6. Kinds of Groups
  7. Reasons for Gatherings
  8. Confusion About Groups Sometimes
  9. The Bible
  10. Pastor/Pastoral Staff and ABFs/Groups
  11. Why Care Should Be by Groups
  12. Sunday Schedules
  13. Schedule of Sunday and Home ABFs/Groups
  14. Principles/Guidelines
  15. Cautions about Changing or Refining
  16. Discussion About ABFs/Groups
  17. Questions About ABFs/Groups
  18. Reality Check Quiz
  19. The Point of Church Activity
  20. R and D Discussion Issues

Continue reading “GROUPS”

Sincere Questions About A Worship Service That May Sound Cynical At Times

PRE-SERVICE

  1. Do the staff and the lead volunteers really understand the purpose and the high importance of the worship assembly-service? Do they attend and participate?
  1. Do greeters and ushers know that the attenders and the guests are to be the object of their attention and not each other?

Continue reading “Sincere Questions About A Worship Service That May Sound Cynical At Times”

PASTORING a “people group” within the church

Guidelines for this “horizontal” responsibility

GENERAL

Pray for and pay attention to people in this age group.

Be the conscience for the leadership team to reach and serve this area.

Assess and sponsor what the church offers to evangelize, disciple,  and care for these people.

PERSONAL

“Go after” and seek to assimilate new people. Continue reading “PASTORING a “people group” within the church”

The Importance of Adult Bible Fellowships -ABFs

Adult Bible Fellowships
Adult Bible Fellowships

The Importance of Adult Bible Fellowships Download

 Adult Bible Fellowships:  Groups of people committed to know and apply the Word together in a caring fellowship, with clear organization to provide care, discipleship, and outreach.

A community within the church . . . to serve and love each other . . . to reach out.

A Sunday adult class geared for true congregational life, where “one another’s” are planned.

Why people need community (and worship services do not give it) Continue reading “The Importance of Adult Bible Fellowships -ABFs”

Key Factors in Growth

As determined by surveys, discussions, and observations.

 

 

1.         The grace and goodness of God. 

                We can pray for it and obviously give thanks.

                 Regular pastoral prayer, groups to pray, “prayer partners.” 

 

2.         The mood of grace and love.  

         Shown in media (minute spots), reputation, services, and community involvement, in halls around services also. 

 

3.         The pulpit ministry.

Biblical exposition but also balanced on issues.  Continue reading “Key Factors in Growth”