Governance

In Congregationalism,

we commit ourselves to making God’s mission known in community. Ours is a progressive Christian community, recognizing many paths to God and opening ourselves to the great variety of God’s people.

Our covenant is based on the Salem Covenant of 1629:

We covenant with you, O God, and one with another, and do bind ourselves in your presence to walk together in all your ways, according as you are pleased to reveal yourself to us in your blessed word of truth.

The congregation is the basis of our governance. Clergy members work closely with lay leaders elected to positions in Deacons, Leadership Council and leaders of the six boards: Community Life, Finance and Administration, Fine Arts, Outreach, Spiritual Formation and Worship.

Moreover, we, the people of Plymouth Congregational Church, humbly seek and serve God within, among, and beyond ourselves. A full description of the Purposes of the Church can be found here (revised December 2018, by the Deacons). A class on the Theology of the Purposes was offered through mid-April 2019, in the Theater. Listen to audio from that course here.

The 2023 Annual Report includes reports from lay leaders and clergy, past meeting minutes, and financial information.

Background and updates on our governance were presented on Feb. 25, 2018; please see the slide presentation here.

Growth Task Force

The Growth Task Force has completed its first phase; you can find a copy here. The Task Force spent a great deal of time exploring church growth and what it means in this time and place. The main take-away is that growth must be a priority for every group in the church. There is no magic solution to the decline in attendance experienced by most churches. The Task Force developed a process that will be presented to the boards and committees so that each group will discern their own growth priority for the next year with metrics. One reason we are often not aware of the places we may be growing is because we do not measure it. We will count it a success if we all pay attention and measure the ways that we can grow through hospitality, engaging programming and spiritual vitality. Think about how you might engage and help the church grow!

Read the charter for the Growth Task Force (April 3, 2018); meeting minutes 09/10/2018.

The CTF has since then looked deeply at Plymouth, its buildings, and its neighborhood, especially in relation to the Purposes of the Church.  For more than a year, the members solicited comments from members of the congregation and sought out the views of people and organizations around us.  Based on that work and deep spiritual searching, the CTF submitted the attached report to the Deacons.

The report makes bold recommendations, which we may or may not decide to do specifically but offer some ideas about what we might do.

We urge your thoughtful reflection on their report, and we express our heartfelt hope that the report will spark a congregation-wide conversation and discernment about our campus, our neighbors, and what our faith commitments call for from us. Campus Task Force Recommendations Final Report.

Deacons

The Deacons are responsible for strategic direction and vision. They also have responsibility for the legal, fiduciary, and spiritual affairs of the church.

Agenda for the July 9, 2024, meeting.

Sue Astin
Annette Atkins, Clerk
John Cairns
Peter Eichten, Moderator
Mike McCallister, Treasurer
Eric Olsen
José Pacas
Johanna Schussler
Maureen Tanis

Send an email to the Deacons.

Deacons minutes form 2024-25

Leadership Council

Chairs of the six boards, clergy, three officers, the church Archivist, and chairs of church Initiatives make up the Leadership Council, which is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the church.

Tom Anderson, Chair
Mary Jordan, Chair-Elect
Nancy Gores, Secretary
Bill Read and Linda Seime, Co-chairs of Community Life
Gina DelCorazon and Rick Seime, Co-chairs of Finance and Administration
Dan Dressen, Chair of Fine Arts
Sara Bergan, Chair of Outreach
TBD, Chair of Spiritual Formation
Becky Dougherty and Jim Leslie, Co-chairs of Worship
Dorene Bruns, Archivist
Karen Barstad, Racial Justice Initiative Chair

Leadership Council minutes form 2024-25