The definition of "Missional Success"
At the meeting of the EWAID Synod Council prior to last weekend's Assembly a question arose to which I did not get a satisfactory answer. In essence it is this, "What can the Synod do to help congregations toward missional success?" My initial struggle is with the definition of "missional success". Our parochial reporting has improved in its reception of information outside of hard numbers, but that remains an emphasis and as long as we remain an institutional church of a similar size and shape I don't anticipate that changing. As long as there are buildings, salaries, and benefit packages a significant portion of our congregation viability will remain tied to the ability to provide for those things (even the LIFT report points to those indicators). Yesterday, in a meeting with my UCC colleague he said this, "Our job is not to be popular. Our job is to be inviting to a deeper purpose." That begins to get at what I am trying to accomplish, but I still haven't found the right words to articulate that success is not about numbers, but lives changed, grace shared, and service offered. What do you think? Pr. Eric OhrtmanSt. Paul Lutheran Church295 E. Dominion AveColville, WA 99114(509) 684-2432