In Case You Missed It…
A Summary of the Congregational Meeting
By Andrew Conrad
The congregation met on July 12th for our annual meeting. While this meeting is in the midst of summer it is important as we discussed our vision for the coming year, our budget, and the structure of two Sunday services.
I spoke some about vision for this coming year at Spring Run. In summary, we believe we are trending in a positive direction which is encouraging after a drop in attendance between June and December 2014. Since January our attendance has returned to the average of 250 people per Sunday which is what it was the previous year. Other positive signs are that we added 20 new members in the last 6 months. We were also encouraged to add 71 new people to our small groups during the past fiscal year.
Our vision is to make growing followers of Christ who influence others with the gospel for the good of individuals, families, our community, and the world. I pointed out 5 emphases of the church from Acts 2:42-47 and then examined where Spring Run is in regard to those.
- The Apostles’ Teaching – faithful to the scriptures
- Fellowship – sharing life together; meeting in homes
- Worship – gathering for prayer, breaking of bread (communion), teaching
- Social Concern – providing for those in need
- Evangelism – met together in homes and public places and the Lord added to their number
When Spring Run first started almost 10 years ago, we intentionally focused on Fellowship and Evangelism. Quite a few people became Christians through this church. I think we also were pretty focused on teaching. So for a while we did numbers 1, 2, and 5 well. Since then we have worked to develop the other areas. Being rooted in this building we have has allowed us to do more for Social Concern. We started Wellspring Counseling, offer a Financial Peace Seminar, launched a Jobs for Life program for Chesterfield County, began Marketpalooza to highlight local business, and hosted Woodlake Community Association meetings. Having a building also places a focus on worship, where we have worked to improve aesthetic qualities related to sound. This year we need to improve the visual qualities by getting new projectors and finishing the stage area. The current projectors are old and malfunctioning. We need to replace them which costs about $14,000. A fund has already been started and is near half way to the goal. If you would like to donate toward them you can designate your gift for Video Projectors.
As we near 10 years it seems to me that we are doing numbers 1, 2, 3, and 4 even though there is still room to improve in those areas. However, number 5 (evangelism) is the most difficult for our church to practice. It is normal (though not healthy) for churches to experience evangelism entropy over time. Evangelism is a word that means making good news known. We want you to be praying for specific people, listening to them, inviting them to something at church, and being their friend even if they don’t come to church. We will celebrate our 10 year anniversary in March. My question is will we celebrate new life? Will we look forward to tell more good news to people in a bad news world? Will we take risks to evangelize or allow our comfort to fossilize us? Our prayer is that God would bring revival to our church and community and many people would believe in and follow Jesus.
Deacon Jeff Green reviewed our budget and I will try to summarize it for you. We hired a Youth and Children’s Ministry Director last August and projected a $29,000 deficit for FY 2015 (July 2014 – June 2015). Expenses were carefully controlled and you gave generously so that we did not end with a deficit but a surplus of $19,000. For FY 2016 (ending June 2016) we have another challenge and are projecting a deficit just over $25,000. Why? We anticipate total expenses to increase 13% to $530,473. The major reason for this is that we have to begin saving money in a capital expense budget to care for and repair this building. To this point we have not been doing that. If we do not plan wisely now we will put ministries at risk in the future. Now is the time to plan for things like resurfacing the parking lot, replacing the roof, and replacing aging mechanical equipment.
The projected deficit is because we plan for a modest giving increase of 6% for total income of $504,720. Please continue to tithe and give generously to the church. We have a base of 105 givers. If you have not yet been able to give to the church please consider giving this year. Jesus instructs us to be generous people because it makes us practically let go of what of the biggest gods we have—money. In so doing, we are actively saying, “God, I trust you even with my finances.” And by giving to Spring Run you give to a cause you are invested in with your time. Your money goes to support missions locally and globally, the ministries and ministers of this church, and the building which facilitates a good deal of that ministry. We have shown good stewardship by only having 28% of the budget going to facilities and under 5% to administration. That means the rest of it goes into ministry either through a staff person, through a program, or through missions locally or globally. Please give generously.
We took some time to talk about two Sunday morning Services. Since this idea is still new to the congregation I wanted to make sure we were clear on some of the basics. Our objectives are:
- Provide another service on Sunday mornings so that as we evangelize we have options to invite friends to.
- Two identical services (same preacher, worship team, songs, Lord’s Supper)
- Guard against volunteer burnout. This means we would need those not currently serving on Sunday mornings to fill new volunteer needs rather than doubling up on people already serving. The exception to this would be the worship team would do both services. Because of this we think back to back (or stacked) services are best because it allows us to create some efficiencies in the volunteer schedule.
The Surveys that were completed are very helpful. If you have not yet completed a survey and would like to please check your email as you should have received it twice from the church. We will put out a FAQ page to help address the questions we are asking as a congregation.
As the Apostle Paul was so often thankful in his letters for the people who were part of the church, I am “thankful for your partnership in the gospel.” (Philippians 1:3-6)