Tuesday, March 31, 2009

At our class on 3-28 we discussed the connectionalism of our church and it elicited a number of comments - some favorable and some unfavorable. A somewhat typical complaint regarding our connectionalism is on the subject of apportionments. This is particularly a bone of contention for older, small, struggling congregations without the funds to afford a full-time pastor and often included in a circuit that does not have services at every church on any given Sunday.

I have been privilaged to work with the three churches of the Brenham Circuit (Mt. Zion, Pleasant Grove, and Richard's Grove U.M.C.) for the last two years. Pleasant Grove has services on the 1st Sunday of each month only, Mt. Zion U.M.C. has services on the 2nd and 4th Sundays, and Richard's Grove has services only on the 3rd Sunday. As you can imagine all three of these once thriving, historic churches are in serious decline and struggle to maintain their aging edifaces and pay their apportionments each year.

We know that CLMs are called to fill the clergy shortage as a low-cost alternative
for struggling churches just like these. My question is: Are we also called to be turn-around pastors, working to revive these churches in lieu of qualified clergy?
Or, are we just expected to keep the doors open until the inevitable end occurs?

Monday, March 30, 2009

This blogsite was started in hopes of preserving communication of our members between classes. This was originally a closed forum available only to class members so that we might be as candid with our thoughts as if we were sharing them in class.

It has since been expanded to include the previous class of CLMs, participating clergy, and members of the Lott Revitalization Steering Team as a vehicle to promote dialog during this project. Please respect one another's rights to express their thoughts in a loving, Christian atmosphere.