A word from Reverend, Dr. Allison Byerley, Senior Pastor
At our Charge Conference last year, we voted to form a team to discern a vision for the church to fulfill our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Notice that I didn’t say "write" or "create." We are discerning. The vision is God’s vision for us and we are listening for who God calls us to be.
This is a process, and it will involve the whole church, not just the members who have agreed to serve on the team, which will be seeking to hear from you. On the day of Pentecost, the Spirit was given to all people, and your dreams for our church are important ways that God speaks to us.
Several of us have been working through a book on leading churches in the 21st century, and we have learned that we start the process of envisioning our future by remembering our past and assessing our present. Who we were is a part of who we are and who we will be. However, it does not mean that we will always look like we do now, or that we will look like we did then.
We have already started discovering some of the important pieces of the DNA that makes Mariposa UMC different from any other church in our community. One is our deep commitment to radical hospitality. Over and over at the cottage meetings we held last year, we heard how new people felt loved and welcomed when they came here, and how important it is that we truly are a place of "Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors."
What other values are important to us? What in our history shows us living those values? What are we doing now that tells others who we are? What values flow out of our radical hospitality?
These are the questions we will be asking in the near future as we ask God to reveal how God calls us to make disciples here. Please be in prayer, and when you hear a word from God, share it with me or one of the team. If you feel called to be part of the vision team, and we have not approached you, talk to me.