Mission Study Team
In the past months, we have finished conducting our demographic survey and sought input through individual conversations with staff members and facilitated group conversations with congregation members. We asked people to share about and discuss their faith journey and community at First Pres to help illuminate who we are as a church and express who we want to be for our Mission Study Report. All of these efforts have been met with enthusiastic response; thank you for your help! We are continuing to work out our findings, but the end is in sight. We eagerly look forward to delivering a report in the Fall that we hope will be concise, insightful, and usable during the rest of our First Pres family's discerning and calling process. Thank you for your prayers and support, both tangible and intangible.
Your Mission Study Team
Chuck Fry, Co-Chair
March 12, 2017
Here is summary of the Mission Study Team (MST) update that co-chair Caroline Taylor gave at the March 12 Annual Meeting.
A Mission Study is completed when a church in the Presbyterian Church USA or PC(USA) denomination is preparing to call a new Senior Pastor.It provides a current, comprehensive picture of First Pres as a tool for the Pastor Nominating Committee to use with prospective pastor candidates. We were commissioned in November and began our work in earnest in January.
Our report will include: the history of our church, particularly the last 5-10 years; an analysis of the membership of the congregation and its financial resources, the demographics of the community where we are located, our pastoral leadership and programs; a review of our goals and objectives for the next 5-10 years; and a review of our mission statement.
There was a comprehensive Mission Study completed in 2010 in preparation for calling our senior pastor and an update in 2016 in preparation for the call of an Associate Pastor for Missional Engagement. These have provided us with very useful information and templates for our report.
We have begun to collect current demographic data about our congregation through a survey that has been sent to members and regular attendees. If you have not taken the survey, click here to take it, or come to our Pathway table following worship services in March through the April 2 survey deadline. This is a preliminary survey about demographics and we expect that we will undertake a more comprehensive survey in the near future to get your feedback on a variety of issues.
An initial section of the report will be shared with Session this month. We are currently meeting with staff members and collecting information from our staff about all of our church departments and programs. Ultimately, Session will have to accept and approve the complete study. Once Session has approved it, the Committee on Ministry of the Presbytery of San Francisco will also review and, hopefully, approve the report.
Our goal is to complete this work in a timely manner and to remain committed to providing an accurate and complete report on our church. To sum up our hopes as a committee, as expressed recently by MST member Katie Spangler, “As we document and analyze our present mission and ministries, we are proclaiming God’s faithfulness in the past and attuning our hearts to His leadership in the future. God has been growing First Pres over the years with the power and truth of his love, gifts of grace, strength of resources, dedicated pastors and congregants, and new opportunities for discerning His purposes. We are delighted to be a part of leadership in this process as we turn with eagerness, trusting in Him, toward what’s ahead.”
Please feel free to contact us with any questions about the work of our committee.
Chuck Fry, Co-Chair
As part of the process to seek a new Senior Pastor, our church must complete a Mission Study Report. The task of the Mission Study Team (MST) is to study and report on the the past and current culture and health of our congregation and to compose a mission statementthat will provide direction for our church’s journey as a Christian congregation over the next five to ten year period. The report and statement are important as they inform the future Pastor Nominating Committee, prospective applicants, and the envisioned mission of this congregation.
It is Session’s responsibility to form the Mission Study Team and name its co-chairs. The individuals on the MST must be members and regular financial supporters of First Pres. We are thankful for more than 50 people who considered serving and those who ultimately applied to serve. Each candidate was prayerfully and thoughtfully considered in order to discern and recommend an MST that is representative of the congregation (i.e., men-women, various ages and ethnicities, long and short tenure at the church, etc.), with a complementary mix of gifts and skills.
The Session announced the Mission Study Team to the congregation at the end of November, and commissioned them during the Congregational Meeting on December 4, 2016.Return to this webpage for updates on the Mission Study Team’s progress.Please pray for this team as they begin their work.
Chuck Fry, Co-Chair