On September 25, 2016 we gathered in the Sanctuary immediately following the morning Worship Service to hold our congregational Quarterly Business Meeting. I am thrilled to announce several important items that the congregation considered and voted to approve during our meeting. All of these developments represent significant progress for FBC, and each one shows that FBC is taking considerable steps of faith. I am excited about where God is leading us.
First, in response to a motion brought jointly by our Associate Pastor Search Committee and our Personnel Committee, the congregation voted by an overwhelming majority to create the new position of Executive Pastor at FBC. As I explained in my letter to the congregation about a month ago, although the position of Executive Pastor is a new concept for FBC, this role has been around now in Baptist churches for about 40 years. The prevailing mission of an executive pastor is to help the church execute its vision. Vision-casting is not difficult. Execution of the vision is extremely difficult and often never comes to fruition because of the constant, day-to-day administrative and internal needs of the congregation. An executive pastor acts as a “second” to the senior pastor, freeing her or him up for the critical tasks of pastoring, shepherding, preaching and teaching. This new position will be a great addition to our FBC staff.
Second, based on the recommendation and motion of our Search Committee, the congregation voted (again, by an overwhelming majority) to call two new ministerial candidates: Rev. Charles L. Fuller as Executive Pastor, and Rev. Alyssa Aldape as Associate Pastor for Young Adult and Youth Ministries. You can read more information about Charlie and Alyssa here. Alyssa will join us at FBC in early November, and Charlie will start in January 2017. Please join me in welcoming them to our church family!
Also, please join me in thanking our fantastic Search Committee (Erik Smith, Chair, Mel Doxie, Ken Ellison, Allen Norfleet, Ellen Parkhurst, and Wilma Prince) for their hard work over the last two and a half years. At last, the work of the Search Committee has come to an end. Praise God! Also join me in thanking Denny Austin, Chair of the Personnel Committee, for all of his assistance with the call process.
Third, the congregation voted to approve the 2016-17 FBC Budget, which was prepared by our Stewardship Committee and our Treasurer, Mike Henson. The 2016-17 FBC budget includes salaries for all of our existing staff and the two new positions described above, includes a 14% increase in giving to missions, and makes some of our previously under-utilized special purpose and memorial funds come alive in a meaningful way. In conjunction with the budget approval, the congregation also voted separately in favor of a resolution brought by the FBC Trustees regarding the use of special purpose and memorial funds. I would like to extend my thanks to Dennis Lambert, Chair of the Stewardship Committee, Mike Henson, and the FBC Trustees (Ken Ellison, Becky Ellison, and Marvin Marceron) for all of their contributions to the budget preparation effort this year.
Fourth, the congregation selected Rev. Paul Clark and Rev. Dr. James Langley as our delegates representing FBC at the DCBC Annual Gathering, scheduled October 27-29, 2016.
Fifth, we heard an exciting presentation from Wil McBeath, Chair of the Property Management Committee, regarding early stage ideas for potential renovations and improvements to our church buildings. Wil’s presentation was a great opportunity to get all of us started thinking about some possible projects that could help us attract new members, make FBC more accessible to the neighborhood, and increase our own productivity and use of our facilities. Please send any thoughts, follow-up questions or feedback on the Property Management presentation via email to D’O Dillard at firstname.lastname@example.org (and please include “FBC Renovations” in the subject line).
I am very excited about all of these developments and what they mean for us as a congregation. God is with us and continues to lead us forward. I hope you will join me in praying for our church as we continue on this path together.