January weather must have played a part in the attendance at the Coffee Meeting held on Thursday. Rev. Teresa Charlton meet with four people from the congregation so our conversation was very informal. However Teresa was able to share a lot about how the Presbyterian Church polity develops on how we do things. Unlike a Congregationalist church which governs itself, makes its own rules, policies, procedures and sometimes theology, The Presbyterian Church in Canada has procedures which are developed through the courts of the church, namely sessions ,presbyteries, synods and General Assembly. Historically the PCC has its roots in the Presbyterian Church in Scotland when several ministers from Scotland settled in the what became the maritime provinces. Likewise the Presbyterian form of Reformed Theology and church government has its roots in the reformation when John Knox studied with the Reformers in Geneva , taking back Reformation theology and policies and establishing the Church in Edinburgh Scotland.
Sometimes it feels like the “wheels grind very slowly” through our church governance but in the long run, it allows for informed decisions which are beneficial to all.
As we as a congregation look forward to the next steps, we have a large say in what we want as our ministry – including what we want to support in looking beyond our walls in mission
As we continue the Challenge of Change, steps include being analytical, strategic, creative , and seeing our potential . Consider;
Reality – knowing where we are now ; understanding how others perceive us: having a sense of our strengths, resources , attitudes and values; reliance on facts; Courage – willingness to take initiative and risk – looking at the Big Picture – where do we want to be in the next year – three years – five years. Generosity of Spirit – caring and sharing by respecting others- having compassion for the pain and fear which comes with change.
No date has been set for the next Coffee Meeting but there may be time set aside at the Annual Meeting for a discussion of what we want to create together in the core of our congregational vision and goals