Are Pastors Recycled or Re-used?

One of the contributors raised an important question that ministers, teachers and workers should ask themselves. After having read the comment I had to ask myself is this a fair and legitimate observation? After some real self contemplation I struggled with trying to understand why this contributor might feel this way.
 

Do ministers in Southwest Region Conference of Seventh-day Adventist have a perception problem with members?
 
Certainly, ministers are recycled as they are moved from one district to another. As they leave their church to another one minister leaves behind people who have formed negative and positive opinions about them. This evaluation is recycled each time they are moved. We conclude with this observation that certain, formed perception (negative or positive) are shared with friends and relatives that are members of our great Conference. Over a period of time, if the minister remains in the SWRC long enough, his, her perception bank is either in overdraft, in the process of overdraft, or as real positive currency. Ministers who have a short tenure probably have positive currency provided that they didn’t leave under questionable or difficult circumstances. Ministers, who have never matriculated in the SWRC, but have positive exposure through media, good sermonic presentation and visibility at religious gatherings would have a high positive currency rating because they have never interacted with members around the conference.
 
Just like in the real world, high visibility, for many people suggest success. Therefore, their negative qualities are seldom known and overlooked. It follows, that members are willing to overlook qualifications for elected offices for high visibility. They assume they are ready for service (which cannot always be the case).
 
I conclude that all ministers who are pastors are recycled and reused. If they have not reinvented their ministry over time their ideas, politics, thinking, sermons, and more are recycled. However, a true servant of God has no issue with being reused by Jesus. Paul has written in Romans and elsewhere…“we should be glad to be called slaves.”(Paraphrased)

God Bless

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66 Responses to Are Pastors Recycled or Re-used?

  1. Jonah_77 says:

    Craig, I don’t believe anyone here has wicked intentions. Even the individuals who have their own design. The problem is that no one else knows. And, you are right, its all in Gods hands. However, we should not treat each other this way. Some of the the post you have made here have been powerful and eye opening. Please do not stop providing your insight. Especially about the organizational system and you can be let go with any review or board or anything. Dont let your voice be silenced. We have seen the same things.

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  2. Jonah_77 says:

    Craig, certainly your this blog is to provide a forum. However, if you have 30 years, you should tell us how you start to change things and publish them here. We need the exchange of ideas.

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  3. Jonah_77 says:

    What I am saying is that God can use a donkey, a Whale, (Jonah_77) or whomever he chooses. I just dont trust Frank, Dino and Jerry with that Donkey because they are mere mortals pawning other mortals for their own desire. But I agree we may be moving away from the real issue which is to change the system.

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  4. Craig says:

    After 30 years of pastoring (including time in your conference) I have learned that in the midst of foolishness and gaming; God is still in control. We fail when we try to match the strategy of of the wicked with a more wicked plan. I still believe in the power of prayer and men and women who are willing to speak the truth at the right time. I pray this blog has no other agenda but to do God’s will; otherwise I’m out!

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      Craig…And I think you are making the point. My point. Remember the kings of Israel and their wicked plans eventually God gave them up to their evil desires. I message is SPIRITUALITY.

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    • @Craig there is no agenda 🙂 Let’s bring it back guys. I think God has blessed us with intelligence to realize the difference. Remember Craig you said that this old system is designed by man a republican system that we continue to follow. God’s hand is in everything even when we make BAD choices as humans. God saw the evil of men during the Holocaust and inevitably we will know how the evil choices of man contributed to his plan. But what if Hitler made a different choice would God have allowed that outcome? That’s the one thing we have to realize God gave us choice the choices of Frank, Dino and Jerry have contributed to the state of our conference being a place where senior ministers are not respected for their accomplishments and opinions, rather tossed to the wind. How can we as men make Godly choices? I think that Craig is referring to biblical stories like Joseph who was young and inexperienced and made governor of Egypt but even in that example God still put Joseph through some trials so that his leadership could have great impact. When I think of the men God has chosen none of them were just given leadership God tried them, tried them and tried them again. We are not trying to interfere with God’s choice…we are trying to take the choices that we do have and make them God-centered. Does this make sense guys?

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      Say Craig it was good Sabbath fun and I am laughing. And being able to laugh makes us human. Again you are one of the most insightful persona on this blog. Thanks for making me laugh and opening up my mind.

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  5. Jonah_77 says:

    Craig, you also should be considered for any of the post in this conference because you have a unique insight. The idea of service is outstanding. The younger ministers are not considering this point. Great comment! What say you?

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  6. Craig says:

    From the biblical perspective, God can still use a jack*** (oops! Donkey)

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  7. Craig says:

    I think we are moving down a slippery slope when we try to argue that service for God is based upon one’s ability or testing.

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  8. Jonah_77 says:

    Also, my premise is that a system does not exist to provide a path. It should at least provide a path to prevent the type of ruthless tactics taking place here.

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  9. Craig says:

    FTS, Here is the process! God chooses whomever he desires whenever he desires. God’s choice is never dependent upon ours. He never chooses because we are prepared but because he is prepared. His choosing is a display of his character…filled with mercy and grace..

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      Agreed Craig…ideally. But what happens when men and women circumvent the system? What about compromised requirements which means that some miss?

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  10. Jonah_77 says:

    Craig, Thanks for coming back. First, lets look at when David became king. Not necessarily as a young pup. Young yes, but also tried and battle tested literally. God looked at his heart and put him on a spiritual path for advancement to the monarchy. Lets see, his first test was to kill a lion, while watching sheep. Next he moved up to killing a Giant man with stones. Then he was brought into the Kings court, amongst men who wanted to kill him because he was stealing their thunder. Not to mention he had a serious problem with the in-laws of his first wife, because her dad wanted him dead. Now a fugitive from a corrupt system, he flees and consorts with enemy’s of the state to find refuge. Finally, before taking the thrown, His best friend Jonathan, is killed in battle defending the man(Saul) who has gone mad and has sworn to kill him. Now, David, my brother Craig, in my opinion is not the best example. Clearly he was tried, tested, field tested, seasoned, placed on the shelf and then FDA approved. But too your point, certainly younger ministers should be given the same trials as seasoned men. Why? Because they will understand the responsibility and accountability they have while in that office.. I think Joash would be a better example. What say you?

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  11. Craig says:

    Bro. Jonah_77, I am wondering that based upon your premise that positions of responsibility should only be given to “seasoned” workers” and not “young Puppies”: Would you have selected David to be the King of Israel?

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    • @Craig I just have to chime in on this one. Yes, David was selected to be King of Israel. However, God put him through trials before he ascended to the throne. When David became King he was seasoned having gone through some serious stuff 🙂 What happened to “dark county work” and other ways to help younger ministers become “seasoned” I don’t think there is an age I think there is a process.

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      Craig you are such a good thinker and thanks for being in the discussion. Your observations are on file for my future reference.

      For the answer to this, let me say that David was chosen and tested. We have to look at the tone of Jonah’s comment to explain why some good men and women are LEFT BEHIND. He addresses your gut feelings as well.

      Our field is an example of bad decision when it came to selecting ministers for open district. Anyone of this region can count the young men who were chosen but are now gone. If position, recognition, power, control are the motivation for advancement then ministry is in trouble. Jonah sounds like someone who has authority and position over people. He also must be a lay person who watched ministers in the early years at campground and the process they went through for their growth. For me I have to admit, I would not trade those years. I grew up in ministry.

      Remember, monarchial rule was not God’s choice, and David was an example of immature blunders too.

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      Craig you are such a good thinker and thanks for being in the discussion. Your observations are on file for my future reference

      For the answer to this, let me say that David was chosen and tested. We have to look at the tone of Jonah’s comment to explain why some good men and women are LEFT BEHIND. He addresses your gut feelings as well.

      Our field is an example of bad decision when it came to selecting ministers for open district. Anyone of this region can count the young men who were chosen but are now gone. If position, recognition, power, control are the motivation for advancement then ministry is in trouble. Jonah sounds like someone who has authority and position over people. He also must be a lay person who watched ministers in the early years at campground and the process they went through for their growth.

      Remember, monarchial rule was not God’s choice, and David was an example of immature blunders too.

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  12. Jonah_77 says:

    I like this blog. People please respond.

    TFS, obviously this story is happening right now. Members should note, that if three men are going to decide the fate of everyone else without involving their fellow ministers then they should be drawn out and their plan revealed in open. Had they talked among the ministers openly about their designs then maybe the need for this forum would be obsolete. What LeftBehind is saying is that because certain people are in prominent positions they have taken it upon themselves to decide who the next president of the conference is going to be. Really? Thats some real power. Furthermore they are going to continue the policy to cut out the hearts of good men. What they are oblivious to, is this, the individual they attempt to bring in, may at some point, cut their hearts out or whats left of the hearts of Frank, Dino or Jerry. Then what? What will be left is a generation of ministry who knows nothing of discipline, and hard work to advance. It will be a generation that knows and cares only about whats in it for them. Also, the more I read Leftbehind, the more I read into the illustrations. Many of you out there have been LeftBehind and you know it. In the 80’s there were tent meetings, crusades, and evangelism efforts that taught young ministers the discipline needed to pastor a large church or the responsibility of being in office at the conference. You will never see a rookie police officer become a detective in the first years on the streets. Why then would you give the best opportunities that were earned by the men of the late 80’s and 90’s to a generation of young pups? We have to consider that Leftbehind was left behind by men who are trying not to miss that last train. Frank, Dino and Jerry, have seen the light at the end of the tunnel. The back room talks, deals, and discussions may actually catch up to them and the ultimate fear for them is that they may no longer be called, “Frank, Dino and Jerry”. There new names could be, Leftbehind 1, Leftbehind 2, and Leftbehind 3.

    There will be a new Frank, Dino, and Jerry and the cycle of being a forgottenshepherdess will continue unless, through prayer, insight, and common sense we discuss and make the best decision. What say you?

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  13. @LeftBehind is this story real or just an example? Is this something currently happening?

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  14. Jonah_77 says:

    The exposure of the men referred is accomplished and their plan revealed. The process must begin to educate constituents on what is happening. Also, let’s be clear, the failure of grown men to take control of their fate years ago is why this situation exist. The political tactics of these men who by the way are not alone because there influence is widespread is wrong.

    What the TFS wants is solutions. So here is what I would do. The Prez needs to make amends and give back the hearts to all the senior fellows he has cut out. Restore the dignity stolen from these men. Acknowledge your mistakes and like Manasseh, be faithful in the end. Furthermore, he should meet with them all with a mediator and conduct a climate survey to determine what folks think about him, and the system of unfair advancement. And yes, Frank and Dino and Jerry can come too. Once in the room, healing and rebuilding can take place. Here is what is important for everyone to understand, bringing in an outsider is in my educated opinion ” more of the same “.
    You have to ask y is this idea being floated around? The Prez, win or lose has an obligation to the future of this conference. An outsider will always have higher external ambitions that will lead him and his thought process away from issues discussed here. You are right, this election has results, some thought that the GOP was going to help this country and change it. We are 24 hours away from a shut down, and the people they are after are seniors, poor people and the uneducated. People wake up! The same thing is happening here. Change the system. What I don’t like is the fact that lots of people know its not fair and dont dare to speak up, even if it’s anonymous!! I call you cowards for leaving your brethren on the battlefield for Christ, knowing he or she is taking fire. This is a serious discussion about your future, why let it be decided without dialogue from learned men? What say you all?

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    • @Jonah_77 I am always enlightened at how you bring the conversation back to the center.

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      I am overwhelmed by your spiritual insight. I concur that the President should do this. It would speak well of him as our Commander. But most likely he won’t.

      My intent and and chosen purpose was only to bring dialogue among those who might be suffering.To allow members and ministers to stand up and make sure that a fair process is conducted. We do not have to make deals in secret places. I HOPE THAT I HAVE DONE SO.

      Thank you FORGOTTON SHEPHERDESS for your insight in developing this forum.

      Really, Craig, Jonah, Dolemite, Clarion, Natashagreg, Left Behind, Ain’t too proud to be, others, Amaze and all those who have chosen to be unknown, thank you for stepping out whether we disagreed or agreed. KEEP HOPE ALIVE!

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  15. Jonah_77 says:

    Let’s bring back civility to this conversation. Leftbehind has strong feelings about this process. However, Let’s be clear about what leftbehind is really talking about, it’s politics. The characters he refers to are engaging in it as we speak. But lets cease to use illustrations or names and expose the idea that there are leaders who are engaging in this arena for self interest. This is not the standard we want younger ministers or leaders taught. My question to first angel, left behind and the forgotten shepherdess and Craig is… What is the standard for advancement now and what should it be in the future?

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    • Ain't too proud to beg says:

      Jonah77 I would like to defend Left Behinds Comment before it is altered or taken down. Many of the members and ministers are very familiar with the story Left Behind is telling. What you have to come to understand is what is at stake at the conclusion of the election.

      Every minister and worker will be affected by the new or reelected administration. What does this mean? People’s lives will be disrupted and ministers like Left Behind will be sent somewhere to die or fade away. The guys he’s talking about have been involved directly and indirectly in the past recycling of ministers, even when they act as if they are “Good Fellows.”

      If this was not truth, they would not have formed a political party throughout the conference to gain support for their effort to bring their “guy” in. They want to remain in Big “D” which of course means that their interest is mainly personal. Yet at the same time some will sit on the Executive Committee or in the new or reelected President’s office and decide the fate of Left Behind, other workers and ministers like him. Left Behind sounds like a “Lifer” who has been wounded by years of pastoral ministry, difficult members, deliberate moves to keep him back, and a frustration of the future as the sun begins to set on his ministry. He’s left behind like many other ministers.

      I am told that the army will not leave a soldier in the field of battle that is lost, wounded or dead. It has been reported on television how the army will search and find those who are wounded at almost any cost. My question to you is–will Frank, Dino and Jerry search for Left Behind? Or will they leave him and others like Left Behind in the field spiritual conflict to die?

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    • Craig says:

      Jonah_77, You asked a pertinent question. “What is the standard for advancement now and what should it be in the future? I tried to be quiet allowing others to share their input, but conscious and compulsion have over ruled convenience. There is so much to be poured out as it relates to your current situation in Southwest Region that I have difficulty in deciding were this pouring process begins or ends. Well, let me first begin by stating clearly and succintly that we need to develop a genuine sense of community as a people. Now I can remember when we were essentially a united people. I remember as a people how we would come together and pray together and struggle together and cry together and we would encourage each other together. I remember a time in church when we use to care for one another. And just because we are all together in the church now doesn’t mean that we are all together. I remember a time when discipline was the responsibility of the entire community. When mother’s were raising their children by themselves the Deacons would step in to pick up the slack. In the midst of all this doom and gloom there is one citadel of hope and that is the black church. Now, What should be our standard for advancement? SERVICE….In order to be a great servant we must PREPARE ourselves by becoming aware of the issues confronting the Church. You can begin by READING…On this blog you have a link to the Constitution and Bylaws…READ IT! Become familiar with the organizational structures and policies of this church. When committees meet dealing with bylaws we often view this as a boring group, but this is where policies are implemented. If we are going to be wise we must be aware. The second suggestion is that we need to hold our leaders ACCOUNTABLE. Constituency meeting is a time for ASSESSMENT. However, your assessment must be made by considering the facts. Read carefully in advance if possible the departmental reports. Consider the financial standing of the conference and how monies are used in our difficult financial times. Go on the conference website and read. A prepared person is a powerful person.

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  16. Be careful with your fictitious illustrations Left Behind

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  17. Craig says:

    FirstAngel1844, What I love most about this blog is that it gives people the opportunity to express their views and share ideas. It provides relief for those who under normal circumstances would never have an opportunity to be heard. Even if what we say may at times be a mere reflection of years of feeling marginalized as if we are lesser than someone else. This blog in my humble perspective equalizes the intellectual playing field. I love the Lord and my people. Learning to love myself helps me to better love you.

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  18. firstangel1844 says:

    I’m glad Craig came back on. You have wisdom and insght that is vital to this discussion. PLEASE STAY WITH US!

    Jonah77 Your comment tonight is always instructive, PLEASE STAY WITH US!

    Both of you will help others understand what is going on in this Conference. KEEP SAYING WHAT YOU BOTH KNOW TO BE RIGHT!

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  19. Sister-girl says:

    to Left Behind and Craig: working overtime I missed a day and it seems like night and day with this blog. I asked for ministers to come forward and I thank you. Only a minister could tell a true tale like that. I fell out of my chair laughing so hard and it would be really funny if it was not so sad. I believe you. That rat-pack story kind of sounds like Primary Colors Boar in the woods story, an illustration about something real. Please let me say I speak for thousands of laiety – I don’t know who you are talking about but I got a feeling the Older ministers know exactly who you are talking about! I have to tell you this blog has opened my eyes and I am sure all levels of people in this conference are reading this, just by your blog stats, because who else would be interested? Frankly, if it is this bad, I don’t know how the Pastors are able to make it to church every Sabbath and keep going. Yes Craig, before I ever complain again about any Pastor, I don’t want walk a mile in their shoes, because with those type of practices somebody’s gone get sued! Well, I got what I was looking for(some Pastors to speak up) I don’t need to hear from them anymore, I got the message! I put this challenge to members of the Constituency,Delegates, Executive Committee Members, The President and administrative Staff, our Pastors need your help and God knows the Teachers and workers might have serious concerns too! People start some serious conversation because God does not want his people to have to live like this. We have heard it said more than once, God’s people should be the happiest! I also remember, whole conferences will be lost! What a somber thought. Lay People speak up! God cannot bless us or our churches if we do nothing. My prayer is that a lot of people will pay attention, because a lot of people are reading this. The way I see it, if you do nothing, you are just as guilty as the Prez and the rat pack, a few governing the many. If nothing else get these people some help! With all that pent up frustration, these Pastors dont just need prayer, they need a PSYCHOLOGIST!

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  20. Craig says:

    When I hear the term “strategic plan” it reminds me why I left the conference (not ministry) after 30 years. The only way I knew a constituency meeting was just a few months away was when our mailbox would be jammed with “conference junk mail” about some new slogan. These is a shame before God, But I knew that the timing of these plans and startegies always seemed to coincide with voting for new (mainly keeping the old) officers. Leadership is displayed during ones term and assessed after. I knew that these slogans always came with a hidden message: “Vote me back in office because I need to run this program.” Give me a gospel break! Folk, we need to open our eyes. Yes, we need to pray, but in your case; I’ll watch and pray.

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  21. Jonah_77 says:

    Left Behind, you sound like a “made man” who is ready to turn states evidence. Everything you said is sad but very true. As I stated in a previous blog, I have seen this system for 20 years. The conference needs to mentor these younger ministers to prepare them for a life of sacrifice with light at the end of the tunnel. What they need to do for the elder ministers of this conference, is allow you all a seat at the policy making table while also providing a legitimate path for advancement to the “FRATERNITY OF BROTHERS”. Any business where you work for 25 years as a builder of things like churches, schools or outreach and then preach hard at 11:00 o’clock service without missing a beat deserves a path to advancement down the road. We are not talking about a job thats 9 to 5. This is 24/7 365. Left behind, you should be in the room making the decisions that mentor younger ministers, develop strategy for the conference and should be competitive for offices that have direct leadership in SWRC. You were denied that path because the policy of the popular was put to practice. Decisions made over potluck and back rooms have created this climate and they wont be addressed by attacking the forgotten shepherdess or trying to suppress this blog. So now, the question is, do you want to continue with Frank, Dino and Jerry, or would you rather turn states evidence, sing like a bird and provide the solutions that address the issues in this forum. But your comments are creative and tell the story many know but are unwilling to discuss. Lets talk about it. What say you?

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  22. dolomite9 says:

    Left Behind you are not left behind on this one!You hit the bullseye on this one!In addition to prayer,fasting,and the study of the Word,how can we stop the “rat pack” and the “fraternity brothers” along with some other backstabbers from causing the whole train from running off the tracks?”A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.”
    All you need is a few frustrated laymen and frustrated preachers and you have the recipe for a disaster of monumental proportions!Please don’t let these people destroy the retirement plan because that is alll we have left to compensate for all that we have sacrificed for the last 30 years of our lives!Something can be done about anything!Even this debacle in the making!

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    • LEFT BEHIND says:

      I thank you for asking the ALL IMPORATANT QUESTIONS!

      The members of our church are smarter than Frank, Dino and Jerry. They know the lyrics of their tunes and they’ve been singing the same songs for years. Once members hear the words of their songs they will know that they represent an interest that has nothing to do with them. Members need the RIGHT information. Once they get it they will do what is right. They will speak out against it in the small committee and out on the open floor. At an appropriate time constituents can write the GC, Union, and local conference and ask for a true democratic way through which this kind of behavior will not occur. Believe you me, elected and appointed officials read what people write and it does make a difference.

      As for the fraternity Brothers…Many of them were advanced too quickly. They didn’t EARN respect. This is why they will continue to cut out the hearts of good men too. They have incorrectly learned that this is the path that gets results. Our field is an example of such a bad policy. Our young ministers reflect the same attitude that exists today in our school systems—bypass the steps that have everything to do with development and go to the top. They missed the steps that many ministers have taken that developed their ministries and kept them committed to this conference. They missed the step of loyalty, and sticking it out when everything seems to be against them. I am not saying that everyone has to follow the exact steps that we did. EACH MINISTERS MATURITY IS DIFFERENT. I am saying, before you can lead an army you might learn how to lead a company (THERE IS NO QUESTION THAT WE HAVE SOME TALENTED AND GREAT YOUNG MINISTERS HERE). But when they get sick, when they have problems with the Saints or are sent to the “bottoms” they will feel “left behind” too. If you are driving by this editorial and feel this thought is out in left field, “PLEASE GIVE ME A BREAK!”

      What can we do?

      “Lord God, step in and save all of us from ourselves!”

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  23. dolomite9 says:

    Dynamite!I like what I am reading !

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  24. @Left Behind thank you for your contribution and clarity to this issue. It is obvious that you are a frustrated member of this work. Is it possible that these behaviors are learned behaviors from predecessors? Maybe those in leadership don’t know anything different because they have never had to be confronted with these types of issues to deal with publically. I think the problem is that everything is behind closed doors. I challenge the SWRC admin and executive commitee to allow the Strategic Planning Committee take some action over the next two weeks before laying out the STRATEGIC PLAN, perhaps have an open forum with ministers to discuss these issues. How can we ask our members to follow a plan that our pastors may or may not support especially when it relates to their performance? Possibly, if the issues are emerging regarding ministers in the field are revealed they can somehow mend these fences and create a different climate within this conference.

    EXECUTIVE COMMITEE confront these issues. THEY DO EXIST. DO NOT SWEEP THIS UNDER THE RUG! Do a survey, call pastors and speak to them SOMETHING! Delegates are communciating their thoughts and feelings on this blog. Do not expect them to vote on a Strategic Plan that did not include honest dialogue with ministers from every demographic in this conference. I challenge all delegates to reject anything that has not included pastors from all demographic regions of this conference in effective and extensive dialogue about their performance, state of this conference, evangelism, and most of all our great members in this conference.

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  25. Ain't too proud to beg says:

    I find your comment to be incredible but true. Thanks for painting a sincere picture. Iv’e thought like this for a long time as a member.Who is Frank, Dino and Jerry?

    Don’t give up left behind God loves you and will take care of you.

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  26. Craig says:

    Oops! The anonymous is Craig!

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  27. Craig says:

    You are absolutely correct when I bring out the fact that this “system” only serves to pit us against each other. we fight each other instead of directing our energies towards changing organizational structures set in place to further disenfranchise us as a people. This changing the “system” begins by challenging the way we do things as a church. Take for instance the selection of church leaders at constituency meetings. This process is a joke. We argue against not being political but the system is organized to have the “many” rubber stamp the selections made by the “few.” Why can’t indivduals just simply come out and publich the fact that they are running for an office? Why can’t the people hear their views, policy, and position statements? What are their five year plans for the campgrounds? What are their plans for church schools in the various districts? How will they evangelize the areas and what are their specific plans? Why can’t the members be more involved in the process of selecting their leaders? Just a thought!

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  28. Wow let me begin by saying humorously I leave you guys for a minute and the topic turns a completely different direction! 🙂 @ Craig I first want to thank you for your contribution it takes reall courage to speak and say how you feel. Secondly, I want to thank you for your service to this field. I am very enlightened to find out that there is no due process for ministers/workers. Is there no contract for any length of time to offer job security to this work? What a risk for a career! To think that these ministers/workers operate under such a structure and still do what they do is AMAZING! THANK YOU FOR YOUR COMMITTMENT! I need some numbers. Can anyone provide us with a list of ministers who have remained in this conference 10+ years?

    @Sister-girl thank you for following over from thoughts.com. Cut-throat may be a strong implication. I don’t want to turn ministers away from joining the discussion 🙂 I think Craig meant “at each others throats” possibly on opposite sides or in conflict. Craig can you clarify that context for Sister-girl?

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  29. Craig says:

    Let me be specific. The church has a model that they have all the power and the pastor has no representation at all …period. When you are hired as a pastor you basically sign on to the fact that you can be fired at anytime for no cause. What security for a family! (being sarcastic). Since this is a Republican run church organization they like the current situation with collective bargaining in Wisconsin, Indiana, and Ohio are taking away the rights of individuals to have a say in their futures. A conference president can fire you just because he doesn’t like you are you are not one of his boys. They will then read you the policy that if you disagree with their decision they will simply deny you of any compensation for the family. This Church which is dar to my heart has removed from the very people who have put them in office the right to protest or disagree with their decision. Church policies are written to insure that you have no right of recourse. You either take it or leave it. Pastors are often in the middle without any help but from the Lord. I’m not speaking about pastors or members who have violated the ethics of ministry. I’m speaking about a system that is is set up to deny you any representative power whatsoever. Sometimes you have to walk a mile in a preachers shoes to understand a system that makes them feel less than men and more like field negroes in the slave masters system. We have learned so well from the master!

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    • Sister-girl says:

      So, should Pastors be even afraid to speak out in a blog, where no one can even identify them? The forgotten shepherdess said she was speaking for those who have no voice. Do you feel that she is doing a christian thing? And if so, should they take this opportunity to speak?

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  30. Craig says:

    As a retired fairly young African American pastor who pastored in your field permit me to add my penny to this debate. I would suggest that ministers in this church have zero representation in this European model of church organization that our regional conferences only perpetuate. Oftentimes, our own frustration with this demonic system we call church organization spill over to our parishioners who only desire to play a vital role in the finishing of God’s work. Until we look at this model of leadership along with recommendations for a new paradigm, we will continue to be at each others throats instead of at one another’s side. I have learned after all these years that working for “them” does not always equal working for “Him.” Consequently, I have decided to work for “Him,” inspite of “them.”

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    • Sister-girl says:

      First, thank you forgotten shepherdess for making it so easy to respond. I was following on thoughts.com and wondered why more workers, especially Pastors have not responded. To Craig, I am still trying to wrap my mind around your statement. I sort of have been thinking Pastors might even be sort of cut-throat, but I dare not say such. What do you mean by European Model? All I know is that every constituency I have ever seen stinks and it also seems that people cheat. I cannot prove it, but is there anyway that we the people can feel like God is in this some way! I can kinda tell when a minister is commenting, Please ministers respond and help us lay people have a little more confidence in you!

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  31. Firstangel says:

    I am glad that you raised the question. This bog I assume is for everyone to see clearer.

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  32. dolomite9 says:

    If a pastor is not mediocre,it is as natural as breathing to want more responsibility and feel that he or she is making a difference.To go into any vocation and expect to spend 30 or 40 years in it and not expect to improve or expand would make you wonder why do it in the first place.

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      I am humbled by your response dolemite. This is why ministers need to paricipate in these discussions. It is there opportunity to reach out and explore the issues that effect all of us.

      If we understand what people are thinking then we can understand and find solutions. THANK YOU FOR YOU WIDER PERSPECTIVE.

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    • @dolemite9: Why do you think SWRC does not see this organizational flaw? Is there a perception problem with how administrators in the regional conference view ministers? Why have they not involved ministers in honest discussion and dialogue about their careers? This lifelong chosen committment and sacrafice? Additionally, Why do you think ministers will not step to the plate and honestly recognize that THIS IS A PROBLEM the fact that they have no ADVOCATES to raise these questions. The caps are for emphasis not emotion 🙂

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  33. @Firstangel, should pastors be worried about their careers? Maybe we should clear that up first. Is it wrong for a pastor to want more responsibility, improve or expand his leadership?

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  34. @Dolomite I agree! The goal is to bring souls to Jesus. It shouldn’t matter. However, I do think that if there is a perception problem with members of this conference and this contributing to a perception that the ministers in this conference would not be ready to take the helm as our conference leaders it should be explored for its validity and clarification should occur. The term “growing your own” I think applies to this particular topic.

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    • dolomite9 says:

      You are right and the responsibility rests upon all of us to realize that everyone has to start somewhere and be measured by where they start,what they have to work with,who they have to work with,how close they come to reaching or surpassing the desired goal or goals.

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  35. Dolomite says:

    WhAt is the panic and paranoia about?Performance is more important than perception!New,used,recycled whatever or whoever reaches the desired goal is all that matters to me!I know whAt it is to be with and I know what it is to be without I still cAn do all things through Christ which strengthens me!

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    • Dolomite says:

      the main thing is still the main thing!

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      • firstangel1844 says:

        What is the main thing? The main thing is finding out how people think. How they think says much about what will happen to ministers. If dialogue reveals a perception problem of how some in the membership feel or think we should pay attention to it. If it is a a fact, WE SHOULD SEEK TO CORRECT IT!

        Can we be real? For ministers their future is in the hands of thinking people who decide based on perception and not always performance. Performance is part of the picture.

        Please respond.

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    • firstangel1844 says:

      Can a person perform well and yet have a perception problem? There are great performing minsters who have toxic personalities that I wouldnt want as my pastor. If you win a 100 souls and are still percieved as a rat performance did nothing for your perception. That is, if you are running for an elected office.

      Often qualified performers are not elected because they have a rotten personality. To inspire people involves something more than performance. JFK was an inspiring personality but Lyndon Johnson was a performer.

      MY POINT IS THIS: People think negative and postively about ministers in this conference because they see them more often than someone who is from the outside.”

      Local members only know personalities by what is revealed in the media or how they preached to them at meetings or what they see on television. I see great men in our field who might not be considered for something because they have served in churches for a period of time and they have taken on both negative and positive currency. I believe that most of our ministers could be President or serve in the departments. Yet some will never get that opportunity because of devloped perception of members. There value is either negative or positive currency or a combination of both.

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