What is the congregation’s or organization’s vision for ministry? Additionally describe how this vision is lived out.
Our vision is to be a vital element of our community. We’re in a time of self-discovery and change, realizing that our church will not look the same as it did in the past. As we go from a corporate to program-sized church, we need different leadership skills. We expect a closer relationship to the pastor than a program-sized church can normally deliver, so our vision is for a pastor who can build a staff and programs to fill that need.
Our vision is to build membership, as well as involvement, and to be financially sound. We want to be alert to God’s direction and hope for our future as we continue to heal from the unexpected illness and death of our beloved pastor.
Our vision is lived out as social changes in our community make greater demands upon our ministry. We’ve become more open to diversity: racial ethnicity, age, families and singles, LGBTQ, with a spectrum of theology and worldviews. Examples include our Jenkins/Jones Lecture Series, community dinners, food pantry and school backpack program.
We have two worship services: blended and traditional, but are together in one service on 5th Sundays. Adult education has steadily grown through programs like Living the Questions, Radical Welcome, and series on death and dying and comparative religions. With 205 children on our rolls, we provide opportunities beyond Sunday School – the Logos program (Super Wednesday) in the evenings during the school year and a strong, growing, community-wide summer Vacation Bible School.
How do you feel called to reach out to address the emerging needs of your community or constituency?
In 2014, MWPC began a new initiative to help the church thrive by focusing on the needs of its members and the community surrounding it. Many programs are underway, yet our mission study shows the desire to do even more through becoming:
- A congregation that broadens the ways we care for our members, as moved by the spirit to…
- Welcome children, and communicating the faith tradition to them.
- Support youth and young adults, addressing the perspectives they bring and challenges they face
- Provide educational opportunities for adults which feed the spirit and challenge the mind.
- Embrace families of all varieties, offering a nurturing Presbyterian Preschool and providing opportunities for parents to play a significant role in the spiritual formation of their children.
- Broaden our reach to singles, the elderly and other groups.
- A congregation that invests in mission outreach with a focus on hunger – providing for the immediate needs of the community; creating opportunities to build up a community of compassion, social justice, and mercy.
- A congregation where excellence in staff leadership is expected and where staff members and laity are supported, respected, and encouraged in their ministries.
- A congregation whose building welcomes people. It is used to grow disciples, to meet the needs of the community, and to send us out to accomplish the work of Jesus Christ.
How will this position help you to reach your vision and mission goals?
- In the face of a shrinking denomination, we recognize the need to reach out more effectively to grow our congregation, not only in numbers but also in engagement, in diversity and in our service to our community and the world. Our pastor will lead and collaborate with the Session and congregation in formulating strategies to meet our vision and goals.
- MWPC has a tradition of strong and committed lay leadership, while respecting the pastor’s prerogatives and independence.
- Our congregation has remained united in the face of controversies sweeping the denomination, but we welcome the challenge to grow together and develop new visions for our future work in the service of Christ.
- We need a leader who will carefully learn who we are and what we do; then articulate thoughtful ways for us to worship, serve and better build our faith in the years ahead. We expect that our new pastor will lead us at MWPC as we strive to renew and revitalize our congregation in our vision, mission and witness to God’s kingdom of peace and justice. We look for a leader who will challenge us to do this together.
Provide a description of the characteristics needed by the person who is open to being called to this congregation and or organization.
- The ideal person for our church will have an interest in, or experience with large church and community issues that match our church and neighborhood’s size. We are a church that straddles both affluent suburban as well as low-income geographical areas.
- At this point in time, our church seeks a pastor who will provide a nurturing and connecting presence, one who builds trust and respect. We are looking for a grounding presence to steer us forward with confidence.
- Our church has a desire to invigorate and renew. With that in mind, we are looking for a visionary, a creative and energetic person to inspire and motivate us with new ideas and ways of doing things.
- We know that it cannot be business as usual, so we are looking for a pastor who will listen to us, work with us and then coach and collaborate with us. We have members that are of a more progressive nature as well as traditionalists, so it’s important to be able to negotiate and connect with members who are not all of the same mind.
- Finally, we know that for a pastor to be effective, this person needs to strike a balance in many areas: leadership, interpersonal skills, organization and preaching.
What specific tasks, assignments, and program areas will this person have responsibility?
The Head of Staff will provide energetic leadership for the church to motivate, challenge, and inspire the congregation to new levels of excitement and service to God in realizing our mission and ministry.
The Head of Staff is…
A Teacher and a Spiritual Developer
- Who articulates the faith through dynamic preaching and relevant worship experiences, administers the sacraments and involves the congregation in worship.
- Who collaborates to design the worship content and format that guides, inspires, challenges and comforts.
- Who works with and through the staff and laity to put the church’s mission and vision into faithful action.
A Leader and Administrator
- Who gives guidance for Bible study and Christian education of our children, youth and adults.
- Who nurtures the church’s prayer life and fosters greater participation in our faith community.
- Who is an ex-officio member of all committees, with particular responsibility for Worship & Music, Business & Finance and Personnel.
- Who acts as a mentor to volunteers and staff; and works collaboratively with Session.
- Who oversees communication within the congregation.
- Who inspires and challenges the congregation to be faithful stewards of their time, talents, and financial resources.
- Who creates an atmosphere of concern that reflects the compassion of Christ’s love and engages the pastoral staff and laity to respond to the needs of the congregation and community.
Church Website: http://www.mwpc-church.org/
Serve, Celebrate, Learn and Care are individual ministry teams.
Cincinnati Presbytery: http://www.presbyteryofcincinnati.org/
Anderson Township: http://www.andersontownship.org/
Mt. Washington: http://www.mwcc.org/about/
City of Cincinnati: http://www.cincinnati.com/
Schools: Forest Hills Schools: https://www.foresthills.edu/
Cincinnati Public Schools: http://www.cps-k12.org/