Congregational Vitality and Community - April 27, 2023

At our vestry meeting three items were on the agenda: the Congregational Vitality conversations, a discussion of current vestry norms, and next steps toward financial sustainability, specifically having to do with building maintenance. 

Congregational Vitality conversations

Congregational Vitality conversations will be happening over the course ofthe next six weeks! These conversations are a part of the transition process and allow us to gather data from everyone about how Good Shepherd is doing vis-a-vis the seven vital signs of a healthy congregation. You’ll remember that we had a preliminary conversation about this with the Rev. Dr. Anne-Marie Jeffery, Canon for Congregational Vitality, on January 15. (Video and info here from that meeting: meeting.) 

We are hoping that everyone will participate in one of these one-hour small-group discussions. As a reminder, gathering this information is a required part of the transition process. Please fill out this form to let us know which meeting you plan to attend, or sign up in person at church. We should have full details of all the exact dates and times by next week.          

  • At Good Shepherd: Sunday, May 7 after the celebratory 10:30 service in honor of our deacon Kathryn - led by Debbie Beebe & Nina Scott (we will leave some time to enjoy the reception before beginning the meeting)
  • At Riderwood: to be scheduled in May (information to follow) - led by Liz Cocke & Florence Walters
  • At Rosemary Addy’s home (6 spots only in Silver Spring, MD 20902): tentatively scheduled for first weekend of June (TBC) - led by Rosemary Addy & Vanvisa Sivali

Next steps toward financial sustainability

As you know, we passed a balanced budget for 2023, for the first time in many years. Yay! We did this with the understanding that funds would need to be raised for building maintenance. The vestry is planning to create a building fund to allow us to meet building maintenance needs in a timely and high quality manner. In order to do this, Rev. Anna suggested that we create a fundraising event in partnership with the other groups that use our building and who have a stake in making sure the building remains in good repair.

We are very excited about creating an event for sometime later in the year. What exactly the event will look like is still to be decided, and we look forward to collaborating with all of you as we plan it. One vision is a traditional church supper presented by a non-traditional church family: multiple congregations and organizations, different beliefs, different languages, different ways of worshiping and serving the community. All united in our desire to feed and be fed, bless and be blessed. After all, Good Shepherd is the place that makes it possible.

The first step will be to set up a meeting in June with the vestry together with representatives from other groups that use our beautiful space: Buen Pastor, Manantial de Vida, Silver Spring Seventh Day Adventist Church, and the Boy Scouts. Stay tuned. 

That’s all for now! Blessings to all, Anna (and JasCiel)

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