Throughout the month of May, the Transition Team will be facilitating group discussions related to spiritually…how you first started to understand the spiritual realm, why you came to First Parish and what might First Parish do in months and years to come to make the church more spiritually inviting to YOU.
As of this posting there a six (6) sessions left to sign up for…space is limited…only eight people max per session. To sign up go to bit.ly/canwechat-may.
Two identical sessions (April 14 from 3:00-5:00PM and April 22 from 7:00-9:00PM) will offer attendees the opportunity to converse openly and frankly about Manish’s ministry at First Parish and his “Passport” video. These will be facilitated conversations, with both structured and unstructured time that will allow people time to voice their views and hear others.
PARENTS NEEDING CHILDCARE ON APRIL 14….please leave a Doodle Note
giving your name and the names and ages of your children needing
childcare. Thank you.
The Transition Team, both for the edification of the
church as well as for itself has developed a first cut at a plan for the next
12 months or so. Nothing here is carved in stone; we all know how quickly
things can change putting a monkey wrench in the best of plans. The Transition
Team is committed to openness, honestly and transparency throughout its
Structured small group conversations have proven to
be a popular and effective way to strengthen relationships, understanding and a sense of community. To build the
congregation’s capacity for ongoing dialogue on weighty subjects, 15 people
from the Transition Team, Parish Committee, Deacons, and other interested
parties have been trained in the use of Reflective Structured Dialogue, a powerful
process for facilitating conversations.
response to feedback from some parishioners, this April the Transition Team
will host two identical sessions offering attendees the opportunity to converse
openly and frankly about both Manish’s ministry
at First Parish and his “Passport” video. These will be a largely
unstructured events, allowing people time to voice their views and hear others.
by several of the Deacons and others the Transition Team will continue to offer
opportunities for discussion this spring. A new program called “Can We Talk …?”
will be offered throughout May and will focus on sharing of spiritual journeys.
In these small group sessions of up to 8 people, participants can share
personal stories and spiritual perspectives that inform why they attend church
and The First Parish in Lincoln.
for the fall and winter will occur over the summer, as the Transition Team
develops ideas for small and large group discussions that we be offered in the
fall and winter of 2019-2020.
fall is a time of renewed energy and excitement. It is when many of us come
back together again after being away for the summer. The fall is also when the
Transition Team will begin leading the congregation through an exploration of
identity. As a congregation, we will become better acquainted with our history
and our roots. We’ll consider our strengths…those things we are most proud of
where we showed our best selves, and our weaknesses things that may have hurt
us individually or as a church body. We will consider deeply our current wants
and needs. We’ll explore our core values, revisit, articulate and document both
our vision and our mission. Lastly, we’ll discuss the relationships and
connections that First Parish has and could/should build outside of itself…in
Lincoln, in neighboring communities, in Boston and its suburbs and exurbs,
within Massachusetts and the in the world.
work of self-reflection and exploration in the fall and winter will help the
congregation to be better able to make some important decisions. Additionally,
a survey in the winter will provide the quantitative data needed to inform the
creation by the Transition Team of a church profile. The profile, which is a necessary
requirement by our two denominations to embark on a ministerial search will be
reviewed and discussed with the congregation. The survey results, along with
what has been heard in all the conversations, dialogues, and identify work over
the past 12 months the will help guide the next Search Committee as they begin
the search and selection process.
Search Committee will be named May or June of 2020. The Parish Committee is
charged with determining the size of the committee as well as developing and
sharing the process of exactly how the members will be selected. A fully detailed compensation package showing
ranges for all salary and benefit considerations will be voted on by the
congregation before the search starts in earnest.
Transition Team will stay intact through June of 2021 when (hopefully) our new
mister will be called by the congregation. Through it all, the focus by be on
the revitalization of First Parish in Lincoln, so our new minister can be
welcomed with enthusiasm and zest.
As we travel through our interim period, we will be discussing and reflecting on all five areas represented above. Until we have a firm grasp of the answers to these questions, it would be unwise to undertake a search process. Finding the answers to these searching questions is one of the reasons we have chosen to have our interim period span three years.
The Transition Team hosted an off-site Retreat for 30 some odd leaders from various FPL committess. Invitees included The Transition Team, Parish Committee, Deacons and the Chairs of all major committees. An email summarizing the findings of the Leadership Retreat was published on March 7, 2019
A Shared Ministry Review (SMR) is one way that churches evaluate their mission and priorities, their ministers and staff, and the organizational structures that support them. Some churches only evaluate personnel or programs as is done in some business. A Shared Ministry Review is a more complete and complex process, sometimes called a Whole Church Review, that understands that people work in a context that contributes significantly to performance outcome. The SMR is a systematic effort to assess the strengths and concerns of the whole church (e.g., key personnel, leadership and organizational structure, finances, and spiritual life) at one point in time.
The team of Chris Andrysiak, Mimsy Beckwith, Dan Boynton, Nick Covino (chair), Jillian Darling, Erika Heilman, Joan Mansfield, Joe Robbat and Liz Wilkinson will work with a consultant, Rev. Dr. Claire Bamberg, LMFT, PCC, to review data from a number of sources (e.g., demographics, committee charges and reports, 20/20 Visioning interviews, peer congregation performances and group evaluations); conduct three Open Meetings (Finance, Spiritual Life, Organizational Structure); meet with stakeholder groups (e.g., Outreach Committee, YPC, Deacons, Care Committee, PC); and interview staff. The committee is interested to hear from all members of the First Parish with answers to the focus questions listed below through one of these mechanisms or by a signed communication.
Open and focused meetings will seek to identify: what members value about First Parish; the role that it plays in members’ lives; what members wish to see in the next three years; and what requires attention to realize that. Both the parish’s financial performance and organizational structure will be reviewed and compared with several peers for bench-marking.
This type of review is a first for First Parish. Those who may want to learn more about its rationale and process can go to: www.macucc.org/wholechurchevaluations. One aim of this SMR will be to distribute data so that the congregation will share a common set of facts and be able to work towards a common vision and shared goals. This will be particularly true for Finance and Organizational information. Thanks to the generosity of R.L. Smith, we will use this website to post information and share our work as it progresses.