Nurturing the health of the Body of Christ through
caring for its pastors.
perfect gift to recognize the excellent work of pastors
A CD designed to support pastors featuring song
writer david bailey
order call 1-800 524-2612
and ask for item OGA-08-099
in Supporting PPCN
Synod of South Atlantic
website for details
on how to join.
President: Julie Johnson
Joe Sandifer, Greater Atlanta
Lou Snead, Mission
Ken Waddell, Cherokee
Office of Vocation
Board of Pensions
Annual National Gathering
Presbytery Pastoral Care Network will hold its 10th
annual gathering on June 11, just prior to the opening
of the Big Tent Event, at the Hyatt Regency in
Atlanta, Georgia. The Theme of this annual meeting is
The Committee on Ministry's Role in Maintaining
Excellence in Ministry.
We will convene at 9 a.m. and
conclude at 4 p.m. The morning will focus on
"Preventative Clergy Care: The Role of
COM's." Leading this session will be Dave Kivett,
COM chair of the presbytery of Greater Atlanta, Sue
Westfall, Associate Executive for Ministry of the
Greater Atlanta Presbytery, and Janet Williams, COM
Chair of Northeast Georgia Presbytery. We can draw
lessons from both big and small presbyteries.
Our Annual Membership meeting
will take place at 11:45, followed by a networking
lunch included in your registration fee. To register
call 1-888-728-7228 X 2417. Cost is $50.
Following lunch, Helen
Locklear of the Board of Pensions will make a
presentation on some of the latest resources from the
Board of Pensions for maintaining clergy health.
At 2:30 PPCN will introduce
the first draft of the Toolbox, a new resource for
clergy, congregations, and Presbyteries. We will
conclude with a discussion of the larger context of
the Big Tent, there will be several workshops led by
members of PPCN.
Pastors: How to Sustain Them"
10:30 - Stephen McCutchan and Carol Allen
New Pastors/First Call"
3:30 - Joe Sandifer
Need a Pastor Too"
7:00 pm - Joe Sandifer
and Intervening When Necessary"
1:30 pm - Alan Baroody and Lou Snead
The Tool Box
The Book of Order has a major section on the
responsibilities of the committee on ministry
(G-11.0500) described in these words: "Each
presbytery shall elect a committee on ministry to
serve as pastor and counselor to the ministers and
Certified Christian Educators of the presbytery, to
facilitate the relations between congregations,
ministers, and Certified Christian Educators, and the
presbytery and to settle difficulties on behalf of
presbytery when possible and expedient."
Considering the complexity of the relationships in and
among churches, the above task is a difficult
challenge. The task of the committee on ministry is to
nurture the regional Body of Christ in their efforts
to reflect Christ in their ministry.
The Presbytery Pastoral Care Network (www.pastoralcarenetwork.org)
and the Office of Vocation of the PC (USA) are
providing this toolbox as an aide to assist you in
accomplishing this task. We hope that you will
strengthen the value of this resource by sharing with
us resources and strategies that you have found
valuable in your work.
As part of being a connectional
church, please accept this as a resource from those
who care about your work. When you feel overwhelmed,
remember that God's grace is made perfect in our
From the Toolbox
Designed to assist a family in talking about the
pressures of being part of a pastor's family.
Get a pack of 3 x 5 cards and
develop some probing questions to place on each of the
cards. Shuffle the cards and put them as a deck on the
table. Beginning with the youngest, each rolls a die
and the number that shows up determines how far down
the deck s/he counts to pull the question to be
answered. Each time a question is answered, bury the
card back in the deck before the game continues.
Some sample questions might
Describe a time this past year when you were glad that
you were part of this family.
2. Talk about a pressure you felt because the pastor
of the church is you or part of your family.
3. Share something that happened at the church this
past year that made you proud to be part of the
4. Describe something that either did or would make
you angry if it happened at the church.
5. Identify either a person or a situation at the
church that you think the family should pray for.
6. Was there a time this past year when the
congregation needed the pastor and it meant that some
family experience needed to be changed? How did it
make you feel?
7. Name four things that are good about being a
8. Name four things that make being a pastor
9. If you were to pray for one thing to change in your
family, what would it be?
10. What are some fun things that you like to do with
The value of such a visit is enhanced if there has
been prior positive exchanges between the churches and
In the age of computers, the
COM could gather a series of "touchstones"
with respect to pastors and DCEs, such as ordination
dates, anniversaries, birthdates, etc. and send a
reminder to the congregations with respect to their
staff. They could also gather touchstones in
congregational life and occasionally send them a
congratulatory message with respect to anniversaries,
significant mission involvement, gifts shared with
presbytery, etc. The gathering of such data is one of
those defined tasks that the right volunteer, not
necessarily a member of the COM, would do with
The COM could emphasize the
connectionalism of the Body of Christ by designing a
joint visit with two congregations where each could
hear what the other is doing in ministry. Every
three years a new set of congregation to congregation
visits could be designed. It might even be created as
a mini-mission fair and involve several small
congregations, guided by a COM visitor to celebrate
the potential of all the congregations. You are
looking for opportunities for the congregation to feel
good about their work as well as to see the potential
for being a stronger part of the larger church.
The session can develop a positive evaluation process.
Such a process needs to be aware of two aspects.
First, it needs to be approached as an evaluation of
the whole ministry of the church rather than that of
an individual employee. Responsibility and
accountability should be addressed not only for the
pastor, DCE, Musician, etc. but also for the session,
deacons, members, etc. In any given area of church
life, almost all of the above mentioned can contribute
or detract from the success of ministry. To identify
an area, for example worship, and then to reflect on
what each can do to strengthen ministry in that area
can be a positive conversation.
Second, there is an approach to such an evaluation
that can generate creativity. It begins by recognizing
how easily a negative comment can shut down a person's
ability to hear. So, the positives need to outnumber
the negatives and the responsibility for the negatives
needs to be spread out as a group responsibility.
For example, the concern might be that the church is
not growing in membership. The conversation might
begin by noting what the various persons and boards
are doing that makes the church attractive to
visitors. Then the conversation might move to the
weaker areas and what each entity can contribute to
drawing more people into membership. This is far
superior to focusing on what someone is not doing that
is preventing the church from growing. It recognizes
the corporate nature of the church.
are just a few of the resources that are available in
Toolbox. Visit our website
for more information.