This past spring, when the Session voted to approve BPC’s new Vision and Mission Statements, one of the questions I had in my mind was, “Okay. . . now that we have these wonderful statements, what’s next?” How will we put these statements to good use? To that end, at the last two meetings of the Session, we have been looking at our Vision and Mission Statements and thinking about how we might transform them into some goals that will help shape the ministry of Bedford Presbyterian Church in the next few years. We aren’t looking at creating a 10-year plan or even a 5-year plan because who can predict the future that far in advance? Instead, we are looking at some 2-year goals.
In starting to create our goals, it was necessary for us to think through several different areas of church life, and we pulled from our new Mission Statement for this. Just to refresh your memory, this is the Mission Statement:
In joy and gratitude, with purpose and passion, the Mission of Bedford Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) is to actively love God and all neighbors; faithfully learn, embody, and follow Jesus through our worship, study, fellowship, stewardship, and service; and heed God’s call in scripture to intentionally do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God – both here in Bedford and beyond – wherever the Holy Spirit calls us to serve.
In our effort to “actively love God and all neighbors,” the Session used this as a jumping-off point for how we think about Worship, Study, Fellowship, Stewardship, and Service. So, we came up with two “pillars”: 1) “Actively Love God (a look inward, at our congregation) and 2) “Actively Love All Our Neighbors” (a look outward, at our community and the wider world). We also added a third “pillar”: “Supporting Church Operations” (for putting the proper infrastructure in place to support the previous two pillars).
The Three Key Pillars of Ministry to Fulfill our Mission Are:
Actively Love God (Congregation)
- Worship – offer our best praise to God through Sunday worship and daily devotion with a theological voice, and that is uniquely BPC and PC(USA).
- Study – provide opportunities for spiritual growth.
- Fellowship – strengthen the body of Christ through congregational connection.
- Stewardship – providing for the ministry of our church and the care for the earth – spiritually, practically, and financially.
- Service – love God through our hands, feet, hearts, and minds as we seek to serve our neighbors.
Actively Love all our Neighbors (Community)
- Worship – make worship accessible and guest-friendly, in-person and online.
- Study – provide community forums for education and enrichment in alignment with our vision and mission.
- Fellowship – provide community connections between neighbors who often do not know one another.
- Stewardship – use the social capital and connections of our congregation to have an impact on our community
- Service – love and serve all our neighbors in ways that are true to our “loving, peaceful, and whole vision” and call to “do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God.”
Supporting Church Operations
- Dedicated Staff and Volunteer Support
- Sound Governance by Elders and Deacons
- Financial Means with Focus on Growth
- Appropriate Infrastructure:
- Physical Plant,
- Technology, and
Now, if you’ve made it this far in my lengthy tome about our Vision, Mission, and Goals, you might be wondering what sort of goals might fall under each of the three pillars. Over the course of the summer, as the Session continues to prayerfully discern our hopes, dreams, and goals as a congregation, I will be sharing some of this information with you. We want this process to be exciting and transparent. I can assure you that as the Session shared their hopes, dreams, and goals at a recent meeting, there was a lot of energy and excitement.
There is plenty more to share. Stay tuned, and let’s see what the Spirit is doing in our midst!
Grace and Peace,
Prepare for Worship
This Week: “It Depends on Faith” (The Promise of Grace)
- Read Genesis 12:1-9
- Read Romans 4:13-25
- Read or sing Hymn # 684 – “Faith Begins by Letting Go”