Thursday, July 26, 2018

Hey Fletch … We are a small groups based, disciple-making church that does lots of church-planting. I wrote to you before about hiring a care pastor. I need to turn over this area to a full-time person. We have a qualified counselor on staff, but I still do some counseling, and many of the funerals, weddings, crisis and community involvement stuff.

I’ve been here for 21 years. We’ve got to change our culture so that I can free my schedule and the church can grow. The new care minister will not just be a chaplain, but will work with small groups and other staff, and raise up teams for caring for people. My vision for this is that it not be a reactionary-type ministry, but proactive. Caring is not typically something that growing, Bible-teaching, suburban churches do very well. Thoughts? 

DRF—Senior pastors need to focus on preaching, as we see the model in Acts 6 with the apostles. You will want to stay “high touch” at critical moments in the lives of your people but then turn over the ongoing care to others. 

I love your emphasis on wanting a pro-active person in the care ministry. A good team builder can create a system for scores of people in your church to be doing the work of ministry. That will open up your schedule and allow you to focus on your primary role in the church—preaching and casting vision. And, it will allow others to use their gifts.

I would also suggest that once you train the people of your church to do care ministry, that you recognize them. I’m a fan of the governing board commissioning them as “Care Pastors.” List those folks on the website, in a special category on the staff or leaders’ page. Let the congregation and community know that you have many people that can care for them. This will help everyone know who are the first-stop care-givers in the congregation. 

Let me know how it goes!