Notes from Stewardship Council
 
 
 
 
 

May 9, 2024

Pastor Andrew

Since our last meeting, the work of pastoring has been full and fulfilling. The church continues to hold its numbers. We are progressing through Ephesians. I’ve found the study of Ephesians to be deeply rewarding personally. I also see it correcting and challenging my perspective on church function and informing my view even of church governance and policy. I’m glad that God’s word truly is good for all of life and godliness.

I was glad for Mark’s apologetic moment. His willingness to do that is a purposeful step in fulfilling the elder’s yearly goals.  Promises made, promises kept.

Joseph continues to work hard, although he was sick for almost three weeks with a fever and other flu-like symptoms. He has changed the youth program some by taking youth meetings through the beginning of summer. This change is positive

As we work together to build God’s kingdom with his power I’m reminded of Paul’s words to the Colossians, I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth.

Elders

  • We finished up our Wednesday night mission.
  • We had a successful mission workshop.
  • The Elders together with the Trustees have moved the staffed nursery for children to a room downstairs while using the room upstairs for mothers and babies.
  • The Elders are working on goals that were presented at the annual business meeting;
    • Mark presented Sunday a presentation on apologetic 
    • We are working on ways for more communication between Elders and the church body.
    • Planning a Church picnic as an outreach time and a way to be more present in the community.
    • Have been visiting in Sunday School classes along with Pastor Andrew what it will mean to have a full-time children’s ministry director.
    • Still working on using babysitting as an outreach tool.
    • The visiting team is still going well.
  • Opened up for Elder nominations.  It has been extended due to a lack of nominations.

Trustees

Playground equipment will soon be here.

Trustees are to meet for prep work that needs to be done to prepare for the location and placement of the playground equipment

Issues with the TV in the kitchen need to be addressed

Possibility of moving drums to the other side of the stage

Jared Enns thinking about the new soundboard and working on that

 

Finance/Budget

Discussed the budget summary as of the end of April. All bills are being paid. Missions received $16,664 on Mission Sunday. This goes to Multiply and the Missionary Support Fund. The first 2 quarterly payments for Multiply will be paid.

Business

Julie’s last day is the end of May. There will be a Thank You fellowship meal for Julie after worship on June 2.

Charlie – There will be a church informational meeting following worship to inform and explain to church members and interested church attendees, about the Children’s Ministry Director full-time position.

Mark and Brian will facilitate and Julie and Melissa will share their thoughts on what this position would involve.

Questions and discussion will be encouraged.

 

Pastor Andrew
  • Will present a sermon on Elders, preaching the word, and the job description for being an Elder.
  • Pray for Pastor Andrew and the next Elder

 

Brian
  • Working on Serve Week.
  • Announcement this coming Sunday, May 12
  • June 6, 7, 8
  • Sign-up sheet will be in the south foyer

April 11, 2024

Pastor Andrew

We enjoyed a blessed Resurrection Sunday. I was glad to see Joseph leading the sunrise service devotional. I thought he did a nice job there. More than that, I’m thankful for his leadership and fresh perspective. His ministry is a reminder that ministries change and grow with new leadership. I’m glad for the ways his work has shifted my perspective on ministry and especially working with youth. I think he’s doing a really good job.

The basics of church ministry have remained stable over the last month. Our staff is running well. We are not looking forward to saying goodbye to Julie but we continue to be glad for her hard work and diligence.

Our series in Ephesians continues to be a blessing probably more for me than for anyone else. My times of study during the week consistently remind me of the basics. God’s word, people, the gospel… these are what it’s all about. We might get clever and creative, but we should always remember the basics. God’s precious word is worth learning. We love God’s word.

Elders

We have been doing an in-depth study following Ephesians along with the weekly sermons. This past meeting, we studied in 1 Samuel 15 and studied what happens when we are not following God’s leading. The biggest takeaway from that was we all need to be listening to the Holy Spirit at all times, especially Church Leadership. We had a lengthy discussion about how we can incorporate more listening at Zoar Church. 

The main things we are working on now are:

  • Children’s Ministry Director – There was discussion on a proposal for a full time Children’s Ministry Director and it was decided that it would be communicated with Sunday School classes and the congregation, to inform them and get their feedback before moving forward and presenting it for a vote.
  • Still working on visitation at PVH and is going very well. There are 6 people on the visitation team. The Wednesday night team is sending about 20 to go meals to the church members who are not able to attend but watch us via video feed.
  • Work has been done on providing baby-sitting for young families. Still work to be done on it.
  • Talked about what we see will be some outreach plans for the future:
    • Service in the park the evening of May 19 with a meal and games, along with having a short service with praise music and Pastor Joseph may be giving a short devotional.
    • Play ground 
    • Basketball area
  • We are still working on goals and the one we are focusing on now is making the Elders more approachable as well as visible and what it means to be an Elder.
  • Will be working on Elder Nominations in April and will have more information out soon.
  • Each of us, along with Pastor Joseph, had one Sunday during Lent to do a short devotional over different topics. This seemed to be well received.

We as Elders feel that we are working well together and are looking forward to seeing what God has in store for Zoar Church.

Trustees

  • Purchased playground equipment
  • Installation will be in May
  • Decide on orientation, location and order of installation
  • Getting price on fencing
  • Have a lead on Little Tykes playset for younger kids
  • Basketball goal – need to meet again on this project
  • Van has been inspected and tagged

Finance/Budget

Discussed the budget summary as of April 11. Receipts the first 2 weeks of April were low. All bills have been paid.

Business

Council voted to allow the Children’s Ministry Director search team to be formed. The team will be Pastor Andrew Wuerffel, Pastor Joseph Carter, Audrie Gramkow and Eric Beye. A few young mothers may be used as advisors but not voting members of the search team.

March 14, 2024

Pastor Andrew

The Bible says, “Do not grow weary in well doing for in due season you will reap if you faint not.” Paul’s encouragement to the Galatians falls on the heels of a stern rebuke. Some of the Galatians had embraced a false gospel. Paul actually gets pretty angry at the Galatian church and those who had deceived them.  After chastising them, he encourages them to chase after good things that make them spiritually strong.

All churches are tempted to fall into dysfunction. It’s where we naturally want to go. It seems as though there is a spiritual equivalent to the second law of thermodynamics. God calls Pastors first, then elders and all the saints to participate in the pushback against this slow decline.  I’ve found my time full of this sort of work in the last month. Sunday mornings, personal discipleship relationships, connections with the staff, elders and other leadership in the church are the avenue.

I feel deeply that the God-given role of a pastor includes the expected things such as preaching and teaching, funerals and weddings. It also includes leading change in areas that we have discussed before. The pastoral area that I’ve noticed in this last month the most is those personal connections. I’ve enjoyed the deep conversations with people in the flock and text messages throughout the day about personal struggles and victories.

We as a church engage in these things because we desire to reap as we faint not. Of course, I have continued in the expected duties. Our time in Ephesians is going well. A person or two have pursued baptism and we are following up with that. The elders and I have discussed that also but the heart of the church is the people. I love the people and am glad for the gift of working as God’s shepherd here with these most valuable sheep.

Elders

The Elders have been working behind the scenes of Zoar Church the past month with different projects in the works.  We have been doing a deeper study in Ephesians to coincide with the sermon series Pastor Andrew is currently working on.  

  • Jason has asked the other Elders to keep in touch with him about how to reach our goals for keeping transparency in the Elder group.  It is so important for church leaders to lead without any kind of personal agenda and for the church to see them without reproach.  It is also important for the leaders to follow the direction of God as they lead the church.
  • The Visitation Team has been working hard to visit with all the members of Zoar that live at the home in the estates.  It has been talked about how to expand the mission.
  • Conversations have been in the works about how to relieve the possible overcrowding in the nursing with the potential of an expanded baby population in the church.
  • Conversations are in the works of a service in the park this spring. Possible date has been set for May 19th.  Details will come at a later date.
  • Rick is working on setting up a child care ministry for the church.  Details are still being worked out.
  • Elders along with Pastor Joseph have been charged by Pastor Andrew to do a 5-minute devotion on Lent and the color sashes on the cross in the sanctuary to be the starting point for the devotion.

The Elders have been working together very well and it seems that our church is growing when we allow God to do His thing. Along with Pastor Andrew and Pastor Joseph we can only keep the growth as long as Zoar Church puts God 1st and allow Him to work.

 Trustees

  • Newer church van has been purchased
  • Will look at getting the old van sold
  • New freezer is in place
  • Playground equipment –Have settled on the setup.
  • Basketball goal – Have been looking at possibilities and location.
    • Council agreed to move forward with both projects

Finance/Budget

Discussed the budget summary for February and all looks good.

 
February 8, 2024

Pastor Andrew

  • In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, his first prayer for the saints there focuses on a deeper knowledge of God. It’s read, “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.” Let’s just all know God. The church serves as a physical apparatus to accomplish God’s goals. Let’s keep it simple folks.
  • The Elders shared their goals at the annual business meeting. These stated goals are an example of their empowered leadership.

 

Elders

  • At the January business meeting we presented the Goals of the Elders and what we want to accomplish in 2024. We felt that they were very well received and have had some positive feedback from them. We do want the congregation to hold us accountable to these goals and we will be working on them with the congregation to accomplish, really exciting to see God at work.
  • Rick – working on goals for working with establishing child care for young families. This is an outreach project for meeting the needs of to help attract young families. Rick is also working with the visitation team at PVH and is going very well and there are a few other people involved in this.
  • Mark and Mike – working on a way to offer Apologetics to the entire church. Will be starting after Easter.
  • Mike – working with nursery situation
  • Eric – will be working on different outreach things; have reached out to trustees to encourage them to move forward with a basketball goal and playground equipment. There are more children coming up and will need to act on nursery space.
  • Jason – is working on more transparency of the Elders.
  • The Elders will be doing a short devotional during church during the Lent season again this year. We divided up the different subjects and are going to start researching the different subjects and will be starting the first Sunday in Lent. 
  • Our prayer is that as we continue on this path that Satan is moved out of the way and allow for church growth.

 

Trustees

  • Actively looking for a church van.
  • Looking into playground equipment
  • Working on ideas for a basketball goal
  • Nursery project- Elders and Trustees to get together and possibly some of the nursery volunteers to come up with a clearer direction of what, where and when and make it happen. Prepare for the blessing of more children.
  • Purchased a new freezer

 

Finance/Budget

Discussed the budget summary for January and all looks good.

 

Business

Will begin to form a Camp Scholarship Team to award monies to those going to camp. Pastor Joseph will take this over.

Elders will work on forming a search team for the Children’s Ministry Director.

 

Other Business

Zoar is the lead church for VBS this year and the curriculum looks good.

January 11, 2024

Pastor Andrew

  • This season represents the end of a chapter and the beginning of a new one. While we head towards our annual business meeting, we are wise to look back over the year and consider our next year with perspective as our teacher.
  • Here are some things that I have learned:
  • Firstly, growth is possible. In an age of dying and aging churches, it is relieving to know that it is possible to both attract and retain new church attendees, even young ones.
  • Secondly, thinking differently and trying new things works. This last year, the elder meetings were run differently and more often. We decluttered the church. We looked at the problems facing the church with new and fresh glasses. The outcome, I feel, was new life and energy in the church. It makes me wonder what other fresh ways of thinking or acting could bless us.
  • Thirdly, God provides. We have seen God’s perfect provision this year. I think that should make us brave as a church to try even expensive things for God’s glory.
  • December brought a close to our Advent series. January has brought a new Pastor who we installed January 7th. We will kick off our series in Ephesians.
  • The series we have chosen are strategic. Nehemiah taught us how to rebuild, James taught us the basics of discipleship, and now, Ephesians will give us skill in deeper devotion to God.

 

Elders

  • Meet twice a month
  • New vision statement “Developing Empowered Disciples”
  • Main goal is to make disciples for God’s kingdom
  • Elders involved in 4 fellowship functions the past month
    • 2 Sunday school fellowship hours
    • Family Christmas program with fellowship time following
    • Youth pastoral installation service with lunch following
  • Looking forward to the new year and implementing new goals Elders have been working for the church, and presenting them at the Annual Business Meeting

 

Trustees

  • New water fountains installed
  • Added circuits in the kitchen
  • Discussion on getting a new hood to fit the new stove
  • Researching a stand-up freezer for the pantry to free up space and be more efficient

 

Finance

  • Discussed the final outcome of the 2023 Budget
  • Reviewed the 2024 Budget to be presented and voted on at the Annual Business Meeting