The following is separate from the 2013 annual report of FaithWorks.
Preface: It is believed that for the Partnership to be truly profound for mission, what must happen is the total blending of our assets, human, real and financial. If we fail to take this step, in all likelihood individual congregations will hunker down and try to hold on to what is theirs and in so doing hinder the missional impact of FaithWorks. Therefore:
All Congregations of FaithWorks commit to merge into one congregation with several worship/mission/ministry sites. All properties and assets will be owned by FaithWorks. The movement toward congregational reformation will be a stepped process. Those steps will include consultation with the Greater Milwaukee Synod (already an ongoing process), incorporating the insights and direction of the ELCA (already an ongoing process), the creation of a new constitution, and the design and creation of a new FaithWorks Mission Council. We are committed to completing this Congregational Re-formation by 1/1/2016.
At the time of this writing, there are seven worshiping bodies; Atonement, Atonement West, Emaús, Emmaus, Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, Our Savior’s and St. Andrew. Early in our partnership there will be some consolidation of worship sites. Each congregation would retain its name as a primary identification and add “a FaithWorks Congregation.” at the conclusion of its name. (e.g. St. Andrew – A FaithWorks Congregation, “Redeemer – A FaithWorks Congregation.”) FaithWorks is not a closed organization…other ELCA bodies, and possibly other faith organizations, are both invited and welcome.
Initially, FaithWorks will be governed by the FaithWorks Mission Council. Following the existing covenant, each ministry site/worshipping body, will elect two representatives and will be further represented by one pastor. All pastors will have a voice at the Mission Council. One task, prior to the 2016 Re-formation date, will be an examination of Council structure …potential Council structures, and the creation of a Council structure which would best missionally drive the FaithWorks partnership.
Beyond constitutional responsibilities, the primary work of the Council is visioning – listening for God’s call for specific mission.
A constitution will be created following the ELCA model constitution. A team will be created prior to the merger to write the new constitution.
Each mission/worship/ministry site will create a vision team whose task will be the continual assessment of neighborhood and site needs, and the site’s missional purpose. These bodies will replace individual congregation councils.
Our focus, with regard to worship would be tri-focal; location, type of worship, and time of worship. We need to decide together which services serve us missionally, and which services best suit the needs of our current worshipping bodies. Restated, we need to focus on worship that serves our current worshipping bodies, but there must be an increased and constant focus on the creation of worship which seeks to engage those who are not currently a part of a worshipping community. Mission Driven worship connects the stranger to God’s grace and purpose.
Traditional Worship at Atonement.
Contemporary Worship at Atonement West.
A North side Anglo oriented worship service at St. Andrew.
A youth service at? Traveling location? A traveling youth team to take the service to different locations.
A Saturday night worship service north and/or south.
A mid-week service at?
A Sunday Evening worship service? It might be the same as the youth worship. Location?
A Spanish language worship service. (Currently at Emmaus.)
An African American worship focus? (See Buildings)
The incorporation of Taizé, Large whole community worship, Special Services, etc.
A careful exploration of our building needs must be priority early in our partnership. There are a variety of possibilities available.
Atonement – with Our Savior’s ministries and worshipping body being moved into
Atonement. A new name could be considered as a part of this strategy.
Atonement West – find permanent location.
Emaús/Emmaus – We have options with regard to the Emmaus/Emaús building. The Latino congregation could be located at another FaithWorks location that is suitable to the needs of that congregation. The EASY program could potentially be relocated (if the building is sold) to a new location in the neighborhood.
On the other hand, the building is well suited for continuing ministry/mission. There are new options being explored, and those options may make the retention of that building financially viable. All options need to be carefully explored.
Redeemer – neighborhood focused.
St. Andrew – Emmaus worshipping body, moving into St. Andrew site. Mission developer hired to redevelop this congregation. Renovation of the worship center at St. Andrew should be explored as a part of the two congregations coming together and the beginning of a new mission in that location. The particular enhancement envisioned would be to add natural light to the sanctuary. A new name should be seriously considered for two reasons; first, so that neither congregation considers itself to be the dominant congregation, and understands that something new has begun. Second so that those who are in the neighborhood understand that something new is happening.
We should consider the options available to us with regard to the Our Savior’s Property and Emmaus properties.
A. We could sell one or both of the buildings, using the money to fund other FaithWorks missions. Atonement could absorb the Our Savior’s Meal Sites, Food Pantry and potentially the SPARK program. A rented location might serve to house the Easy program. The mayor has said that he might be able to help us to secure a location for the Wholeness Center.
B. We might retain one or both of the locations. Existing ministries could continue there, and potentially new ministries/missions might be created to serve the people in these locations. We might be able to find an African American congregation who would share our missional goals to develop an African American congregation in the Our Savior’s property as a part of the partnership. This congregation could use the Our Savior’s property. This would increase our diversity and our missional ability. This is also likely to be a very good location for our Wholeness Center, and might prove to be the locus for our FaithWorks Youth Ministry.
Atonement West needs to locate and obtain a property for expansion. Any building for Atonement West would be multi-purpose/multi-mission. There could be, with the right property, an “eco-justice” center as a part of the property. We might also develop an entrepreneurial use for the building, like a World Market in conjunction with the Emaús ministry.
Each campus is currently performing a variety of ministries and missions. These need to be examined for efficacy, with the goals of elimination of legacy programs which are no longer effective, consolidation of programming where appropriate, and reduplication of particularly effective ministry. Worshipping bodies are located in neighborhoods which each have specific needs. Worshipping Body Vision Teams are charged with the continual engagement with and evaluation of the neighborhood where the campus is located and the development of programming to meet the specific needs of the people of that neighborhood.
The following ministries/missions are integral to the success of the FaithWorks Partnership:
A. The Atonement West Expansion.
B. The Atonement Child Care Ministry.
C. The Our Savior’s Meal Sites.
D. The Our Savior’s Food Pantry.
E. The Our Savior’s Spark Program. (Current program needs evaluation)
F. The Redeemer Terrific Tuesdays Program
G. The Pan de Cielo project
H. The Emaús Mission
I. The EASY Program
J. Neighborhood Camp
K. The St. Andrew Community Garden
L. The St. Andrew Care for Creation Program/Congregational Green Teams.
M. School Partnerships.
N. SALT (Serving and Learning Together)
In addition to these essential current ministries, the partnership will focus energy upon:
A. The FaithWorks Wholeness Collaboration including and particularly the Wellness Center. One aspect of a Wholeness Center might include a Latino Resource Center.
B. A Youth/Young Adult staff person…who may be used to help redevelop the St. Andrew location, and/or other FaithWorks worshipping sites.
In addition to these areas, a continuing focus needs to be upon our current disciples. The following areas need particular focus:
A. Senior Ministry including shut-in visitation and ministry with seniors to enhance their lives and faith.
B. Bible Study and other growth education.
C. Vibrant child and family faith development ministry.
D. Gift assessment and the incorporation of disciples into the mission of the church.
E. Equipping people to use their God given gifts in their daily lives for the sake of God’s mission.
F. Our biggest focus, with regard to our current membership, should be to coach members to live their faith in new and vibrant ways.
G. Programs that enhance our relationships with one another at particular campuses and across the partnership. (Recognizing the need for creating a strong and mutually beneficial relationship between the Anglo and Latino congregations. Understanding that the programmatic aspects of those relationships have yet to emerge.)
All staff positions will be staff of FaithWorks. While individual positions may serve a particular worshipping body or location, those employees will be employed and supervised by the FaithWorks organization.
A single administrative location will be established. (Most likely in a space currently available.)
All positions are open for evaluation in the establishment of FaithWorks. (As no building is considered beyond change, neither can any staff person be considered permanent and unchangeable. This is true of both lay and ordained staff. We must staff to meet our current needs and missional goals.)
We will have a Business Administrator (full time/part time ?) whose primary role will be to steward the financial aspects of FaithWorks and offer supervision of non-clergy positions. The business administrator shall report to the FaithWorks Mission Council. The scope of this role is dependent upon how many other roles will be absorbed into this office.