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Vestry Covenant

Whereas:

Church leadership includes many of the traits of organizational leadership, yet takes a step further.  Like all leaders, church leaders are called to motivate and inspire others to achieve the vision and mission of the organization.  But church leaders are called to do so from a spiritual basis and to center their understanding of the vision and mission on the idea of living into their spiritual calling from the Lord and helping others to do so as well.  

The norms below serve as a covenant for vestry members.

We do not work alone:
  • We will attend the annual vestry retreat to ensure full understanding of our mission and goals
  • We will participate in major parish events to ensure visibility and to reinforce the event’s importance in the life of our parish.
We meet reasonable expectations:
  • We will regularly attend Vestry meetings – having not more than three unexcused absences during a year – so we represent everyone in our work. 
  • We will make and keep an annual pledge to demonstrate our commitment.
  • We will adequately prepare for meetings in advance to ensure active participation and successful consideration of the actions before us
  • We will provide timely information to support effective communication
  • We will offer honest expression of support or concern to facilitate consideration of each issue
We will do nothing without prayer:
  • We will attend worship regularly so we experience prayer in community with the congregation. The Canons of the Episcopal Church help us by defining “regularly” as attending every Sunday unless we are sick or at work.
  • We will participate in Christian study opportunities to promote growth in our understanding of our mission and ministry. 
  • We will use prayer to help us overcome differences and provide spiritual direction. 
We will remain outwardly focused:
  • We will actively solicit and gather information from parishioners to facilitate consideration of all aspects of parish life.
  • We will seek participation from others outside the vestry to fill leadership roles so we might strengthen our foundation.
We will maintain a positive outlook:
  • We will talk about vestry decisions with one voice to support these decisions
  • We will respect opinions that differ from our own to encourage honest expression.
  • We will harbor no resentment when others, either those on the vestry or in the congregations, seem to not appreciate our commitment.
  • We will hold all confidences to protect our trust in one another.
We will focus our activities on the goals we set:
  • We will openly discuss our goals with parishioners.
  • We will actively seek ideas and suggestions from parishioners about our goals
  • We will candidly evaluate our progress and modify our goals as needed.
Our agreement:

We will faithfully strive to fulfill these obligations.  If we fall short, we will renew our intention.  If we find we cannot meet these expectations, we will acknowledge that we are not providing the leadership expected of our position and we will resign our position so that it might be filled by others.

We will also look to the greater whole and, after prayerful consideration, counsel any fellow member who is clearly not living into this covenant.  If a vestry member does not live up to expectations, after counseling, he/she may be asked to resign or may be removed from office.  As members of the vestry, we each accept that encouraging and ensuring appropriate participation from all vestry members is part of our responsibility.  We are each other’s keeper. 

Respectfully Resolved,

The Very Rev'd Spenser Simrill, Priest-In-Charge
The Rev'd Dr Donna S. Mote, Priest Associate
Pat Roberts, Senior Warden
Reuben Bostic, Junior Warden
Daniel Alston, Tim Bacon, Linda Cage, Karen Davis, Michael Proscia, Michael Spring & Janet Standen, Vestry

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