Plan for change

How will you continue the vital life and ministries of the congregation?  Plan for change.

How does the life and ministry of the church change but continue?

Evaluate your church’s usual activities and services (including religious rites and practices) to identify those that may facilitate virus spread from person to person.  Set up policies to modify these activities to prevent the spread of the virus.  Assess all of your options to ensure that the course of action taken by your church maximizes the support provided to your congregation and community.

Set procedures for

  1. activating your church’s response plan when an influenza pandemic is declared by public health authorities and
  2. altering your church’s operations accordingly. 

Noting age groups that may be most vulnerable and the age grouping of your pastors, workers and congregation, consider the possible impact on you.  Use retirees in your plan.

How can you redistribute the workload among people?  Pastoral staff will be hard pressed in their role, and may be called on to conduct funerals for the community as well as their own congregation.  Do you need to repriorize the tasks and goals of the pastor?  How about the secretary and the custodian?  Survey the congregation to determine what gifts they bring to the body.  Quite possibly there is more than one person who could take on parts of these jobs.  Identify other congregational members who can back-up the regular pastoral and other staff and help them through cross-training and practice.

For example, if the practice is that the pastor is required to preach every Sunday, consider delegating some Sundays to other ministers or lay people. Consider other duties relating to the Pastor’s Role that should be delegated to other persons within the congregation.

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