Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Flashback to three years and three months ago
Can you believe that it was over three years ago that we, as a community, created these focus areas for Bethel Evangelical Lutheran Church?  These were intended to guide us for 3-5 years.  Thus, it seems the appropriate time to take a closer look at how we have done and what we have left to do. 
Along with our vision statement, “In gratitude, Bethel Evangelical Lutheran church amplifies God’s grace, nourishes all creation, reaches out, and builds community,” we also agreed to work in the following areas:
Increased and diverse membership:  New faces more diversity, A more diverse membership, Bigger “garden”, Welcoming atmosphere for all to belong, Age diversity, More people in church
Dynamic, inspired, well-attended worship:  Increase number in rich, Meaningful, Energetic worship, Increased participation in worship, Everyone feels nourished, Inspiring worship and music, Energized / living worship
Resources and leadership for growth:  Balanced budget, Pastor Brenda = lead pastor, More members, Larger staff, Shared and growing leadership, More active participation of Bethel members, Initial planning of the next BIG thing
Intergenerationally-friendly and exciting: Excited conversations and laughter, Kids playing loudly, “Older” members valued and engaged, Intergenerational events, Visitors curious about Bethel’s “buzz”, More teens and young adults active and engaged
Community outreach and resource sharing:  Opportunities for people to connect (within and outside of the community), Diverse regular community volunteer opportunities, Vibrant neighborhood, Many events for every need and all people (social, physical, religious), Bethel Community Center, Daily community resource for joint activities / ministries, People use Bethel’s block freely knowing they are welcome, Economic justice issues in practice
Developing and deepening relationships:  Freely, openly sharing and talking to each other, Announcing/displaying pride/joy in members’ accomplishments, Small groups and participation, Love of Christ showing
Over the next couple of months, you are invited to share feedback about these focus areas. 
What have you seen happen well in these areas? 
What other ideas do you have to contribute to them? 
Which ones are we best accomplishing? 
Where do we need to be more intentional?
Are there other areas we need to add?
What is the next BIG thing for Bethel?
Are you on board with the next BIG thing?
What say you????
Feel free to share your feedback with any of our leaders.  Sharing in writing is best, then we are able to discuss with other leaders in the most effective way.  Don’t wait to be asked in person, just let us know what you think!
I look forward to the conversations that will be sparked about our future, together!
With you, for Jesus,
Pr. Brenda

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