New Called Woker At Resurrection?
At the last quarterly voter`s meeting it was shared that the church council feels because of the growth we have been blessed with and based on Crossroads ministry recommendation, it would be wise to add an additional called worker. For these reasons the church council is including funding for this potential position with the hope of calling an additional called worker at some point in the 2017/2018 fiscal year.

Please understand this is only the funding portion of the process. There will be upcoming opportunities for the congregation to help develop what this additional called worker`s role would be. Although the council feels this called worker is necessary even if the merger with Monroe does not happen, the nature and/or specifics of the call could likely be very different if in fact the merger with Monroe does come to fruition. Below is a summary of the discussions had by the church council and some general information regarding some options that lie ahead of us.

Why are we talking about the possibility of a new called worker at Resurrection?
1. This would be an additional called worker. Pastor Strutz is not going anywhere, God-willing.

2. This discussion is NOT because Pastor Strutz is overwhelmed, but the discussion of an additional called worker has arisen to help us meet more opportunities to build up current members and reach out to more people in our communities.

3. God be praised! We have been blessed with growth. We are growing to the point (330 members) at which an additional called worker would be desirable.

4. Crossroads consulting has helped us see we are now no longer a pastor-size church (50-150 in worship), but are now a corporate-size church (150-350 in worship). Average attendance each weekend at Resurrection is around 200.

5. Additional called staff is one of the issues to confront in the shift from a pastor-size church to a corporate-size church.

6. Crossroads has identified several ministry areas in which we could improve, such as utilizing more volunteers, having more adults attend Bible study, having more children in Sunday School and strengthening other inreach ministries.

7. We realize there are many called worker vacancies in our synod right now (over 100), yet there are compelling ministry opportunities at Resurrection. We will leave to the Lord and to a called worker who would be called to determine where best to serve.
What about a staff minister?
A staff minister is typically a full-time called worker called to work with a specific area of ministry, such as education, outreach, or worship. A staff minister may have received specific training at MLC for a specific area of ministry, may have received training as a teacher, or possibly was already serving at a congregation in another capacity and was called to staff ministry.

It should be noted that there are currently 1394 pastors in the WELS. There are 95 staff ministers, across all areas of ministry. Staff ministers would not be trained or qualified for preaching.

It is the opinion of the church council that due to the small number of staff ministers and the even smaller number trained in the specific area of need for our congregation, that a staff minister would not be the wisest called worker position to add to our staff. The discussions about becoming a multi-site congregation with Monroe would also point toward having another pastor who could share preaching with Pastor Strutz and Vicar.

What would a new pastor do?

It would seem best that a new pastor be called to address areas in which we could improve, as well as best complement the gifts of our current pastor. There could be modifications to the list below as ministry needs arise. Also, these are only general categories. Other things would be included. Here’s a possible division. This would require more discussion: Current Pastor: New Pastor: More frequent preaching More frequent adult Bible study Supervise Vicar Encourage more volunteers Outreach Inreach Teach Bible 101 (often one-on-one) Sunday School Personal ministry (hospital, shut-ins, etc.) Leadership training/development

What about Mt. Olive in Monroe and our merger talks? How would that be affected?

The proposal to call an additional pastor is being presented separate from the merger talks with Monroe, to show that there is need at Resurrection for an additional pastor. If discussions and decisions with Mt. Olive proceed to becoming one, multi-site congregation, an additional pastor (likely living in Monroe) would greatly enhance ministry efforts. All 26 of the multi-site congregations in WELS have more than one pastor.

What are the financial implications?

The full cost of a full-time pastor varies based largely on three factors: salary, housing and health insurance. There are other costs such as pension, continuing education, mileage and professional expenses that are smaller. These are all included in the costs below. Salary: The pastor’s years of experience can affect salary by $10,000-15,000 per year. Housing: If a pastor lives in a parsonage, or church-owned home, an equity allowance (about $600 per year) is added to salary. If a pastor purchases his own home, the rental cost of a three-bedroom home is added to salary. (In the Verona area, this cost is around $18,000 per year.) For information purposes, there is a parsonage in Monroe, which is owned debt-free.
Health insurance: The pastor’s family situation, (single, married, without or without children), can affect the cost of health insurance widely. Costs range from $7,000 to $24,000 per year.

The council is including in the proposed church budget for 2017/2018 a pastor with 20 years’ experience (similar to Pastor Strutz), a pastor buying his own home in the Verona area, with a wife and children for health insurance purposes. Total cost in this scenario for an entire year would be around $100,000. This would be the most expensive scenario for planning purposes. The budget, however, includes these costs for half the year, figuring that it would take time for the congregation to call, have a pastor accept a call and then move to our area. Total budget impact in this half-year scenario for 2017/2018 is $50,000. Again, a different scenario, (pastor with less experience, pastor living in a parsonage in Monroe, pastor single or without children) could lower the costs.
What’s the timeline?
  • July 9: funding included in 2017/2018 budget. If approved, then…
  • August-September: Open forum to discuss congregational needs (could change with Monroe decision). If agreement to move forward, then…
  • September-October: meeting with district President
  • November-December: Place call (or decide to wait for May 2018 assignment).

- - Volume: 5 - WEEK: 1 Date: 12/21/2017 8:15:02 PM -