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Letter to the Village (5/9/2018)

Dear Village,

The Drumming Circle: At the last Drumming Circle, we asked you to pray regarding the possible move to two services and give voice to what you heard from the Holy Spirit. Since then, many of you have talked with leaders and elders in Monastic Communities and individual conversations. The consensus that seems to have arisen is that God is indeed calling us to move forward toward two services. If after praying, you have concerns or feedback which you have not discussed with an elder or leader, please begin that discussion before the upcoming Drumming Circle on May 19. The final decision will be made by the elders during this Drumming Circle.

The goal: The purpose of this change is to better serve the mission God has given the Village. If we are to heal our city one person at a time, we will need increased capacity over time. This capacity is represented by physical space but also by organizational space wherein people can be trained to minister and freed to serve. At the conference last year, it became clear that we have a very unique way of offering the healing of Christ to the world around us. As a church, we want to reach out into the community and provide more opportunities for people to follow Jesus and find healing through Him.

Transition of pastoral staff: In order to facilitate discipleship development at the Village, the elders have decided to hire Mark Crawford as a paid pastor. Mark believes that God has called him to this ministry. He is extremely teachable, takes instruction well and puts it into practice, and has committed large amounts of his time already to the Village by caring for people, opening his home, mentoring men at the Village, writing music, etc. He has stepped into the process of learning how to disciple people in complex situations and has a good command of Scripture as a teacher. His wife, Layne, is already ordained as a minister of the Village, and the two work well together as a team. The elders believe that it is important to hire Mark because we are in the process of growing. If we decide to go to two services, we will be doubling our potential capacity. Rod will also likely transition out of his current position within the next few years, and we will need to have someone trained to meet the needs that this will create.

Transition of administrative staff: Julie Brunson has started working for the Christian Reformed Church as the Discipleship Coordinator of the SW Region. Some of her duties at the Village fall under the umbrella of this position, such as the training of disciples, the development of missional direction, and the process of creating more capacity within our community. However, her role will also include remote work with other congregations and some travel. This means that she will no longer be working as an administrator at the Village and is no longer being paid by the Village. After much discussion among the elders, we have come up with a plan which we think will cover Julie’s previous tasks and create more space for delegation and streamlining within the larger community. We have decided to hire Jessica Dennes and Susan Cepin in part-time positions (4-5 hours/week for $250/month each) to join Julie in forming an administrative team made up of both staff members and volunteers. Sue and Jessica will be responsible for organizational tasks but will also help coordinate volunteer positions and train people to pick up new responsibilities in the community.

Financial Details: We will pay Mark $2,000/month for 30 hours a week. Between payroll adjustments and the $765 now available from Julie’s previous pay, we can readily cover $1,000 of this amount. This would leave $1,000 which we would hope to eventually gain via increased monthly giving; however, we have money in savings to cover this additional amount for the first two years if needed.

I am grateful for your participation in this ministry and community God has created here in Tucson. Thank you for your prayers re: these decisions and your ongoing support and encouragement of the leaders as they seek God on your behalf.

Pastor Eric

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