Superintendents, field outreach ministers, and district administrative assistants gathered this week in Des Moines to develop their working relationships as teams. Nancy Sayer and Ken Ehrman from the Samaritan Center for Congregations in Naperville, Illinois outside of Chicago trained the teams, using a variety of exercises and assessment tools. They discussed ways to maximize the impact of the actions of individuals on each team in their shared work and to identify options for increasing job satisfaction and productivity. All of this was to enable the district teams to be more effective partners with local lay and clergy leaders throughout the Iowa Conference to create world-transforming communities of faith. Apportionment gifts from local churches throughout the state helped to support this training.
The Samaritan Center for Congregations “strengthens congregations by helping them discover and utilize proven resources to address the opportunities and challenges they encounter.” On Monday evening our consultants presented a sample Church Assessment Tool (CAT) report to leaders from Faith United Methodist Church in Centerville. The CAT is being considered as a complementary resource in conjunction with the Healthy Church Initiative discernment process. This resource helps local churches understand themselves more fully especially as they prepare for transitions, successions in leadership, and strategic planning.