How to change a church Minetto United Methodist Church

Minetto United Methodist Church
“Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors”
VOLUME 1, ISSUE 14
JULY 2011
Minetto United Methodist Church
PO Box 217, Minetto, NY 13115
315-343-3465
Pastor Chuck Forbes
From the Pastor
How to change a church
The preacher stepped to the pulpit with dignity and passion. He was articulate. He was persuasive.
He was enthusiastic. He was here interviewing to be the new pastor of Old First Church. He was
really giving it his best shot.
At one point, he got particularly fired up. He raised his voice. He raised both hands high in the air,
letting his gestures punctuate his point. "If called, I will lead this church into the twentieth century!"
A hush fell over the crowd. Everyone was a little embarrassed for him in making this gaff at such a
crucial point in his message. They were all cheering for him to do his best and cringed at this mistake. None were more embarrassed than the would-be pastor's wife. In fact, she couldn't contain her
embarrassment and spoke softly to her husband. Yet, most everyone could hear. "Psst! Honey, you
mean, 'Twenty-first century.' You said 'twentieth century.'"
"We are going to take this one century at a time!" was his quick reply.
The story illustrates a basic principle of change. Many church leaders want to change their church,
and are deeply convicted that their church needs to change, but they don't know how to change.
This story illustrates a one word principle that has two applications. If you want to change your
church, do so slowly.
The two applications of this one word principle work like this:
 Don't try to change your church too fast. People will rebel, get mad, and reject the change.
 Don't ever quit trying to change your church. Keep changing your church--gradually, continually,
and forever.
The point is not a contemporary church.
The point is not to change the church into a contemporary church, or into any particular kind of
church. It is not to change the church from this to that. It is that the church is alive and that living
things grow, and living things change. Growing relationships change. It is not about moving to some
ideal style. It is just that the nature of life demands that we change.
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Minetto United Methodist Church
As obvious as the point is, I am always surprised how often this principle is violated. I know
churches that have not changed at all in at least thirty years. They feel like the church that I attended
when I was in high school which, at the time, felt old fashioned to me. It felt old fashioned thirty years
ago, and so many churches feel just like that. They have not changed at all in thirty years, maybe
more--maybe much more.
Living things change. Juan Carlos Ortiz illustrates this point with an imaginary story. "Imagine," he
says, "I go to my wife and say to her after thirty years of marriage what I said to her before our first
date, 'Sister Mary, I don't know if you have noticed or not, but I feel differently about you than the
other girls in the youth group. Do you think I could take you to dinner some time?'"
This is a very normal and appropriate thing for a seventeen year old boy to say to a seventeen year
old girl before their first date. But, if he is still talking to her in this stilted way after thirty years of marriage, something is dreadfully wrong. Growth demands change. Relationships change. Living things
change.
Don't change too fast
One of the reasons why churches don't change is because they tried change and it didn't go well.
So, they quit changing. They didn't slow down the rate of change. They quit changing altogether.
Mark Twain tells a charming story about this. "If a cat sits on a hot stove, you can be sure of one
thing. It will never sit on a hot stove again. In fact, it may not sit on any stove ever again." The paraphrase of that for church life works like this. "If a pastor ever tries to change his church, you can be
sure of one thing, he will never try that change again. In fact, he may not try any change again.
We change too fast--or try to--it doesn't work, so we quit changing altogether.
Don't try to change too fast. The key word on how to change a church is slowly.
By the way, how many Methodists does it take to change a light bulb?
Five. One to actually change the light bulb, and four to reminisce about how great the old light bulb
was.
The other answer works like this: CHANGE? Who said something about change?
Don't ever stop changing
This principle of constant, incremental, ongoing and forever change is not only my opinion, it is also
the opinion of smart people.
Jim Collins has a whole chapter on this in the excellent book, Good to Great. He asks the reader to
imagine an enormous flywheel--a great rock on a huge, wooden rod. A large work force pushes
against the rock for a whole shift and, owing to the enormous mass of the rock, are only able to
move it one foot. The next crew comes in, and, building on the work of the first crew, they move the
rock two feet. After a few days, each crew is moving the rock a quarter of a turn,
VOLUME 1, ISSUE 14
Page 3
then half a turn, then a full revolution in one shift, then a full revolution per hour and so forth. Each
shift builds on the momentum of the last and is able to push the rock faster and faster and faster until finally it is whirling so that a whole shift could miss a turn and its momentum would still have it
spinning like a top.
The whirling flywheel is a picture of success. It pictures all the effort necessary to create success,
and it pictures the idea that once some success is created, success tends to breed success. Now,
imagine someone sees this whirling fly-wheel and says, "Which push was the key push that created
this success? Which was the key push?"
The question itself makes the point and needs no answer. There is no one thing that creates success for a business, for an individual or for a church. It is the successive effort of thousands and
thousands of pushes--those thousands of efforts to change that wheel just a bit that create the enormous, unstoppable, whirling momentum.
It is so easy to look at a mega-church and ask the wrong question: "What is the key? What was the
change that created all this? What was the push that made it possible?
There was no one push. Thousands and thousands of individual, heroic efforts by ordinary people
over a long period of time made it possible.
Gradual, slight, incremental change, if consistently delivered, can result in monumental change over
a period of time.
Three inches a week
A pastor was fired once for moving the pulpit from the side of the stage, as it is in some churches, to
the center of the stage. He moved the pulpit and the church promptly fired him.
About a year later, he visited the church. To his shock, the pulpit was resting in the middle of the
stage--the very place where he had tried to move the pulpit, only to be fired for doing so.
Overcome with curiosity, he waited for a private moment afterwards and asked the pastor, "How did
you get the church to go along with moving this pulpit to the center? They fired me for trying. How
did you do it?"
"Three inches a week," the pastor replied. "They never noticed."
Want to know how to change your church? Three inches a week. As easy as that sounds, don't miss
the point. You have to change every week. I know churches that have not changed three inches in
thirty years.
Gradual, incremental, forever change is the sign of life. How do you change your church?
Slowly.
Shalom,
Pastor Chuck (and Tommee)
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Minetto United Methodist Church
Table of Contents:
From the Pastor
Pg 1—3
Hymnal Update
Pg 4
Church Milestones
Pg 4
Worship Schedule
Pg 5
2011 Graduates
Pg 5
July Worship Assistants
Pg 6
Secret Sister Update
Pg 7
First Tuesday Update
Pg 7
Free Will Dinner
Pg 8
Evangelism Team Update
Pg 8
Youth Group Update
Pg 8
Finance Update
Pg 9
July 2011 Calendar
Pg 10
Worship & Song Hymnal
The newest hymnal from the United Methodist Church will be purchased for our
sanctuary. Eighty copies have been approved for purchase by our Church Council. If
you would like to purchase one (or more) of the hymnals and dedicate it in memory
of a loved one, please contact Pastor Chuck. Cost for one hymnal is $10.00.
Milestones in Our Church
The sympathy of the congregation is extended to the families of Leora Van Patten, Karen Bourdon-Clark
(Pastor Chuck’s cousin), Doris Welch (Joanne Reidy’s mother), Catherine Seymour (Donna Reed’s mother),
Al Graham (brother of Bill Graham) and Helen Pfaff.
The congregation welcomes into the family of Jesus Christ through baptism: Sarah Ann Katherine Platten,
daughter of Chad and Erin Platten; and, Cooper William Klefbeck, son on Jesse and Tracy Klefbeck.
The congregation also welcomes the Platten family as the newest members of our church family.
The congregation extends congratulations and blessings on the marriage of Jonathan Edward McLoughlin, Jr.
and Jessica Lynn Recore, June 4th, 2011.
VOLUME 1, ISSUE 14
Page 5
Worship Schedule for July 2011
Please note that worship will be at 9:30 AM
Beginning July 3rd—through Sept. 4th
July 3rd
9:30 AM Communion
Gospel: Matthew 11: 16-19, 25-30
Sermon: Jesus thanks his Father
Psalm 72
Lay Reading: Romans 7: 15-25a
July 10th
9:30 AM
Gospel: Matthew 13: 1-9, 18-23
Sermon: Parable of the Sower
Psalm 25
Lay Reading: Romans 8: 1-11
July 17th
9:30 AM Noisy Can Offering
Gospel: Matthew 13: 24-30, 36-43
Sermon: Parable of the Weeds
Psalm 139: 1-12,23-24
Lay Reading: Romans 8: 12-25
July 24th
9:30 AM
Gospel: Matthew 13: 31-33, 44-52
Sermon: Kingdom of Heaven
Psalm 105: 1-11, 45b
Lay Reading: Romans 8: 26-39
July 31st
9:30 AM
Gospel: Matthew 14: 13-21
Sermon: Feeding the 5000
Psalm 17: 1-7, 15
Lay Reading: Romans 9: 1-5
Congratulations to all our Graduates!
Harold & Mildred Clark Memorial Scholarship Graduates:
Jennifer Hotchkiss, Oswego HS – attending SUNY Oswego in Fall
MacKenzie Dunsmoor, Oswego HS – attending SU in Fall
Recognizing other Graduates:
Danielle Mather, Oswego HS – attending Gannon Univ. in Fall
Eirik Bjorkman, SUNY New Paltz
Keating Di Risio, Adelphi
Matthew Farden, AAS Degree, OCC
Harold & Mildred Clark Memorial Campership:
Trevor Burdick
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Minetto United Methodist Church
WORSHIP ASSISTANTS ~ JULY 2011
July 3rd : Communion
July 24th
Greeters:
Mary-Lou Carpenter- Greeters:
Bjorkman and
Linda Rosche
Bill Martin and
Nancy Prarie
Acolyte:
Trevor Burdick
Acolyte:
Amber Tickel
Reader:
Marilyn Stephens
Reader:
Frank Bickel
Coffee Hour:
Friendship Brunch
Coffee Hour:
Nurture & Care Cmte
Counters:
TBD
Counters:
TBD
July 10th
July 31st
Greeters
Jeanette Heath and
Mary Cipra
Greeters
Tim Page and
Marilyn Stephens
Acolyte:
Samantha Gardner
Acolyte:
Cole Rothrock
Reader:
Gloria Bickel
Reader:
Trevor Burdick
Coffee Hour:
Nurture & Care Cmte Coffee Hour:
Counters:
TBD
Counters:
Nurture & Care Cmte
TBD
Altar: Joanne Reidy
July 17th
Greeters:
Frank and
Gloria Bickel
Acolyte:
Riley Jaquin
Reader:
Jennifer Brown
Coffee Hour:
Nurture & Care Comte
Counters:
TBD
CONTACTS
Nancy Prarie
Greeters
342-3915
Mary Cipra
Acolytes
342-2889
June Tryon
Readers
343-9692
Diana Rockhill
Coffee
Hour
343-0613
Lucille Becksted
Counters
343-4479
VOLUME 1, ISSUE 14
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SECRET SISTER UPDATE ~ SUMMER 2011
Minetto United Methodist Secret Sister Program
Do you want to be a Secret Sister?
All are welcomed to participate!
W
hat is the Secret Sister Program? This program is an outreach
ministry for the women in our church fellowship. All of the ladies of our church are invited to participate. If
you participate you will draw a name and that woman becomes your Secret Sister for a year. She does not
know who you are but she knows you are there. Likewise, someone will be caring for you in that way too.
Secret Sisters are about encouraging, praying for and supporting each other in small ways.
If you are willing to be a Secret Sister, fill out the “All About Me” form (available at church or on the church
website minettoumc.org) and return or mail it to Nancy Prarie by Sunday, July 3.
We will draw names for our Secret Sisters on Sunday, July 17. If you are not present that day you may draw
the following Sunday.
Nancy Prarie’s address is 2949 St. Rt. 48 Oswego, NY 13126, or hand it to Nancy anytime before the cutoff
date July 3. If you have any questions about this program please email Nancy at [email protected] or
call her at 315-342-3915.
FIRST TUESDAY UPDATE ~ SUMMER 2011
First Tuesday will resume in September. To avoid Labor Day, and school opening, the first session will be
Tuesday, September 13, at 7 PM in the Mowry Lounge.
The topic for the new year will be Managing Your Moods. Marilyn Meberg of Women of Faith says, "As you
know, God created us with a broad spectrum of emotional potential. On one end of the spectrum, we experience giggles, gladness, and joy; on the other end, sadness, disappointment, and anger. It is important that we
feel all of these emotions, and
even express them, but by the same token, we must learn to express
them in appropriate ways." The
women's First Tuesday study
will look at God's perspective on our
emotional lives and what He
does to help us manage our moods.
Save the date, and save the first
Tuesday of each month for a time of
study, self reflection, and
fellowship.
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Minetto United Methodist Church
FREE WILL DINNER UPDATE ~ JULY 2011
The free will dinner on May 22, 2011 served 29 persons.
Our next dinner is July 24th and will include: sloppy joe sandwiches, salt potatoes, veggies and dessert.
The Nurture and Care committee would like to thank everyone that has helped make these dinners a successful ministry
EVANGELISM TEAM UPDATE ~ JULY 2011
Your Evangelism Team accepted responsibility for the annual planting of the vegetable garden at
Oswego County Opportunities Minetto group home. The seeds, plants, and other items
have been graciously donated and received from the congregation. The garden has been
planted and is growing. We are grateful to everyone who contributed plants, other
needed items, along with thier time and talents. A big Thank you to all. More about this
MUMC outreach activity next month.
Bill Martin, Team Leader
MY GOD ~ MINETTO YOUTH GROUP OF DISCIPLES ~ JULY 2011 UPDATE
Our most recent meeting was on June 26th following the service. We are happy to say that great strides continue to be made with our participating members and that they are doing a great job!
We have planted the garden to benefit the church's monthly freewill dinner. THANKS to the men who prepared the soil (could not have done this without your help). Also, THANKS to those who planted: Cole
Rothrock and Linda McFall as well as youth group leaders, Randy Dohse and Debbie Daby. The yummy
vegetables that We have planted: are tomatos, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, green beans, carrots, radishes
and gourds. THANKS also to Pastor Chuck for his assistance with the watering, etc. We are looking for
more youth to help throughout the summer with the weeding and the vegetable gathering.
As always any youth in 5th grade or above are welcome to join us. Plans going into this summer include:
scheduling time for carwash fundraiser this summer and other activities during the summer break from
school.
Please refer to the weekly bulletin for our scheduled meetings, contact the church office Wednesday through
Friday or contact Debbie Daby or Randy Dohse. If you have any questions about MY GOD (or ideas of
things we might want to do over the summer and early fall), please contact Debbie Daby (343-8301 / [email protected])
VOLUME 1, ISSUE 14
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FINANCE COMMITTEE UPDATE ~ MAY 2011
Finance & Stewardship Committee Report for May 2011
O
ur current expenses and shared ministry obligations for the month of May 2011 amounted to
$8731.48. Our current expense income from all sources was $9,343.47; giving us a $611.99 surplus for
the month. Our income was $374.86 less than we projected for the month and our expenditures were
$1,641.81 less than we forecast. All bills, including our Ministry Shares assessment, were paid in full.
Our year-to-date current expense income at the end of May totaled $49,783.09 – $386.58 less than we expected, while expenditures were $42,621.94 – $9,244.76 less than we budgeted.
The members of the Finance & Stewardship Committee thank you for your faithful stewardship of the financial support of our church.
We welcome your suggestions and questions and invite you to attend any of our meetings. We normally meet
at 7:00 P.M., on the third Wednesday of each month except November and December when we meet on the
second Wednesday.
Our next meeting has been changed to Tuesday, July 19, in order for Mr. Keith Muhleman,
President of the United Methodist Frontier Foundation to meet with us to explain the possibility of investing
our reserve funds with the Foundation and to answer our questions. He will also describe the procedures for
establishing an endowment fund for our church that could provide earnings to supplement our income in future years. The purpose of the meeting is purely to gather information and get answers to our questions. Our
reserve funds are presently held in certificates of deposit and, because their earnings are very small, the members of the Finance Committee felt that good stewardship dictates that we investigate other options. All members of our congregation are welcome to attend the meeting. We especially encourage all members of the
Church Council and Board of Trustees to attend since they would be the ones to make any decision to change
our procedures and to execute them.
Copies of our reports or the budget will be provided upon request. A copy of the treasurer’s complete monthly
report may be found on the literature rack beside the sanctuary doors.
Finance & Stewardship Committee members for 2011 are: Frank Bickel; Mary Cipra; Debbie Daby; Dennis
Dumas, financial secretary (598-9770); William Martin; Bill Rockhill, treasurer; Steve Salisbury; Vernon Tryon,
chairman (343-9692 or [email protected]); and Rick VanPatten.
4:30-6:30
Free Meal
31
9:30 AM Worship
9:30 AM Worship
24
Noisy Can Offering
9:30 AM Worship
17
9:30 AM Worship
10:30 Friendship
Luncheon
9:30 AM Worship
Communion
10
3
NHS=New Horizon
Singers
NHB=New Horizon
Band
PC = Pastor Chuck
Sun
Office Closed
4th of July Holiday
7 PM Transition Team
25
18
11
4
Mon
9 AM NHB
9 AM NHS
10:30 AM Osteo Group
6:30 PM Concinnity
9 AM NHS
10:30 AM Osteo Group
26
9 AM NHB
27
9 AM NHB
9 AM NHS
10:30 AM Osteo Group
6:30 PM Concinnity
7 PM Finance
20
19
6:30 PM Concinnity
13
12
No Chapter
9 AM NHB
6:30 PM Concinnity
6
9 AM NHS
10:30 AM Osteo Group
Wed
5
Tue
Thu
10 AM UR Prayer Group
1-3 Disciple I Study
28
Reese-Brown Wedding
Rehearsal
10 AM UR Prayer Group
1-3 Disciple I Study
21
10 AM UR Prayer Group
1-3 Disciple I Study
14
10 AM UR Prayer Group
1-3 Disciple I Study
7
July 2011
Oswego Harbor Fest
29
Reese-Brown Wedding
Fallbrook
22
15
8
Canada Day
1
Fri
Oswego Harbor
Fest
30
23
16
10-12:30 PC at
Africa University
Endowment Fund
9
2
Sat
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MINETTO UNITED METHODIST CHURCH
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