Dear Covenant Partners and Friends of First Pres

Last February, our 20/20 Vision Team updated the congregation on the progress of its initiatives. In particular, the team reported on a concurrent approach to Initiative No. 9 (a building program) with the need for a wholistic philosophy of mission for the church.

Our elders and pastors have worked diligently to develop and approve a strategy for developing a clear vision for mission at First Pres.

We’ve identified three main questions that need to be answered with clarity and specificity:

Three Main Questions

  1. What is mission?
  2. What is a missional church?
  3. What is the missional identity of First Pres?

As we’ve pursued these questions, we recognize that Mission is not just a program or department of a church, it is the organizing principle of the entire church. Answering these three questions, then, needs to include more than just the Mission Department of First Pres.

Here is our game plan:

First, create a Missional Task Force.

As of April 2019, three First Pres committees (Downtown, Missions, and Outreach & Evangelism) have been temporarily combined into a new team: The Missional Task Force. This team will continue the regular committee work each of these groups are tasked with; however, it will also engage part of the development of a clear vision for mission at First Pres.

Second, entrust questions 1 and 2 to the Missional Task Force. 

The first two questions are like guardrails. Before we ask questions about the identity and mission of First Pres in particular, questions 1 and 2 encourage us explore God’s Mission in Scripture and the role all churches play in it. They also address how churches in North America can address the changing cultural with the timeless mission of God. These are the two question that the Missional Task Force will be wrestling with.

Three, establish and execute a plan for question 3. 

Since one department cannot bring clarity of identity and missional priorities to the entire church, a more holistic discussion needs to take place to answer question 3. While the Missional Task Force gets started on questions 1 and 2, Session is prayerfully discerning how  best to gain clarity on the identity (distinct goals, gifts, opportunities, etc.) of First Pres. Once a path forward has been determined, we will share it with you!

Our hope is that you would join us in the conversation. We’re all partners in the gospel and rescued people on Christ’s rescue mission! Each month, the Missional Task Force will publish a guide for the congregation to follow along in their exploration of Scripture and best practices. These guides will include scripture, reflection questions, suggested prayer points, and recommended resources.

If you would like to receive these monthly updates, please sign up below or check out the new Missional Task Force webpage.

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I look forward to seeing how God might continue his good work in and through our church!