January Update: Working Group #2

Working Group #2 was established to provide recommendations that will align Session and staff structures to emphasize shepherding, equipping and governance by elders and tactical work by staff and ministry teams. They also were tasked with clarifying objectives and lines of communication for staff and volunteers. (Click to return to Strategic Planning homepage.)

Working Group #2 held a Q&A Session after the 11:15 a.m. service on January 8 in Room 101. We had a slight issue with the recording being distorted and we apologize that it's a little distracting.


Click to download WG2's presentation from 1/8/17

Click to download WG2's presentation from 1/8/17

New Elder Structure for Third Church

Third’s Session approved a new structure for the role of elder on December 13, 2016.  It provides for two kinds of active service for elders, a role focused on shepherding and discipleship, and a role focused on governing.  In order to put this plan into effect, the congregation will need to approve changes to our By-Laws, planned for early in 2017.  

Brief Overview of New Structure

Session - Governing Elders

  • Made up of 12-15 Governing Elders along with Senior and Associate Pastors
  • 5 committees: Strategic Planning, Personnel, Budget and Stewardship, Officer Nominations and Development, Denominational Connection
  • Nominated from previously ordained elders and elected each year

Shepherding Elders

  • Made up of previously ordained and newly elected elders
  • Serve as a team in one of four discipleship and shepherding roles: Parish leaders, Parish Shepherding Elders, Teachers and Small Group Leaders, and Ministry Leaders
  • New shepherding elders nominated and elected as identified each year to join previously ordained elders continuing to commit to active exercise of their perpetual office

Parish Organization

  • Parishes are groupings of Third’s membership in geographic areas
  • Key vehicle for pastoral shepherding and care
  • New way to provide for connection, discipleship, and mission through Parish Groups (small groups focused on mission)

For the full background and context for this change, and FAQ, please read the expanded version of Working Group #2's January Update. 

For a copy of the Tim Keller article referenced in the expanded update, click here: Leadership and Church Size Dynamics. 

Questions? Reach out to Ed Satterfield or David Skove.