“CALL TO ACTION” BY THE COUNCIL OF BISHOP OF THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH

 

CALL TO ACTION

The Council of Bishops
The United Methodist Church

“We are Called to Action”

“FOR THE SAKE OF A NEW WORLD, we see a new church.

WE SEE A NEW CHURCH. It is a church that is clear about its future, a church that is always reaching out, inviting, alive, agile, and resilient. We see a church that is hope-filled, passionate, nimble, called by God, and courageous. It is a church that is passionately committed to the mission and vision of the Wesleyan movement. This church takes ricks to serve the poor, reach new people, and search continuously for creative ways to help each person grow in grace, love and holiness.

TODAY WE CALL YOU TO ACTION, to join with United Methodist sisters and brothers from around the world in the adventure of becoming a New Church. The most important steps will not result from legislative action at General Conference or in annual conferences. Instead, they will require different actions and patterns of leadership by bishops, clergy, and laity. These changes must be grounded deeply in the spiritual discipline of prayer and fasting. These changes have already begun, and the Call to Action is already starting to be employed in many congregations and conferences. WE CALL YOU TO:

• GROW VITAL CONGREGATIONS that will make disciple of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world;
• DEMONSTRATE COURAGEOUS TURNAROUND LEADERSHIP that leads the church towards deep Holy Spirit change;
• TAKE RISKS; experiment in ministry as we go to the margins of society to minister with the poor, immigrants, prisoners, and the homeless, as well as with the non-religious and nominally religious people in our communities;
• UNITE AS ONE; develop deeper trust so that together we face our adaptive spiritual challenges;
• SET VISIONARY GOALS and support one another as we eagerly experiment, innovate, embrace, and regularly account for our ministries.

-The Council of Bishops, The United Methodist Church
December 2011

******************************************************************

A Call for Bold Leadership to Transform the World

“The gifts he gave were that some would be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ.” Ephesians 4:11-12

A Call to Action to the Council of Bishops

1. Model and lead the denomination in practicing the means of grace.
2. Lead conferences to develop plans that include metrics and goals that measure the growth of vital congregations and the four areas of focus- end death by malaria, eliminate poverty, start new faith communities, and recruit younger clergy.
3. Embrace and develop metrics and goals that measure a bishop effectiveness, the growth in vi8tal congregations, and the results in the four areas of focus.
4. Focus conference resources on recruiting younger clergy.
5. Lead co9nferences to call, equip, and support turnaround spiritual leaders.
6. Continually improve skills and practices to strengthen the church.
7. Set specific time during Council meetings when active bishops will:
* Grow in their faith.
* Increase skills and abilities to lead the church, particularly to lead conferences to address our adaptive spiritual challenges.
* Account for fruits/results in growing vital congregations, making new disciples, recruiting younger clergy, developing turnaround clergy and lay leadership, and engaging more disciples in mission.
8. Pray for and work with other bishops, denominational leaders, and
congregational leaders to grow unity within the church; grow trust
within congregations, conferences, and the denomination; and engage
in listening and conversation with non- and nominally religious people
in the community.

A Call for Action to the General Agency Staff.

1. Regularly practice and model the means of grace.
2. Direct financial and training resources to grow vital congregations and help conferences and congregations carry out the four areas of focus, end death by malaria, eliminate poverty, start new faith communities, and recruit younger clergy.
3. Serve collaboratively in and across five strategic areas:
a. Administrative and Strategic support Services,
b. Congregational vitality,
c. Leadership Excellence,
d. Missional engagement,
e. Justice and Reconciliation.
4. Develop and embrace metrics and goals that measure staff and resourcing, effectiveness for growing vital congregations and achieving results in the four areas of focus.
5. Continually improve skills and practices to strengthen the church,
6. Pray for and work with bishops, conference leaders, and congregational leaders to grow the unity of the church, grow trust within congregations and the denominations, and increase the ability of the church to engage in listening and conversation with non-religious and nominally religious people in the community.

Call to Action to the Annual Conference and Staff

1. Regularly practice and model the means of grace.
2. Direct resources to grow vital congregations with particular focus on implementing the 16 drivers of vitality and carry out the four areas of focus, end death by malaria, eliminate poverty, start new faith communities, and recruit younger clergy.
3. Organize the conference as appropriate and work collaboratively in areas:
A. Administrative and Strategic support Services,
B. Congregational vitality,
C. Leadership Excellence,
D. Missional engagement,
E. Justice and Reconciliation.
4. Develop and embrace metrics and goals that measure staff and resourcing, effectiveness for growing vital congregations and achieving results in the four areas of focus.
5. Continually improve skills and practices to strengthen the church,
6. Pray for and work with pastors, laity and bishops to grow the unity within the church, grow trust within congregations and the denominations, and increase the ability of the church to engage in listening and conversation with non-religious and nominally religious people in the community.

Call for Actions to Pastors

1. Regularly practice and model the means of grace.
2. Lead your congregations to become more vital, particularly leading your congregation to implement the 16 drivers of vitality and carry out the four areas of focus, end death by malaria, eliminate poverty, start new faith communities, and recruit younger clergy.
3. Develop and embrace metrics and goals that measure your and the congregation’s effectiveness for becoming a highly vital congregation and results in the four areas of focus. This includes but is not limited to the five denominational discipleship goals.
* Disciples make new disciples m- professions of faith;
* Disciples worship – worship attendance;
* Disciples grow and mature in their faith – number of small faith-
development groups;
*Disciples engage in mission- number o members engaged in community and worldwide mission;
*Disciples give generously to mission – the amount of money given to mission.
4. Grow your leadership skills to lead the congregation to implement the 16
drivers of vitality and achieve the five denominational goals with
increasing effectiveness.
5. Pray for and work with your laity, superintendent, and bishops to grow the unity within the church, grow trust within congregations and the denominations, and increase the ability of the church to engage in listening and conversation with non-religious and nominally religious people in the community.
6. Encourage and mentor turnaround leaders to serve within the congregation and the community and foster an environment in which others can hear and respond to the call to pastoral ministry.

Call for Actions to Laity

1. Regularly practice and model the means of grace.
2. Serve within your congregations so that it becomes more vital, particularly leading/serving your congregation to implement the 16 drivers of vitality and carry out the four areas of focus, end death by malaria, eliminate poverty, start new faith communities, and recruit younger clergy.
3. Grow your leadership and/ or servant skills to serve with increasing effectiveness so that the congregation implements the 16 drivers of vitality and become more vital.
4. Embrace and develop metrics and goals that measure your and the congregation’s effectiveness for becoming a highly vital congregation and results in the four areas of focus. This includes but is not limited to the five denominational discipleship goals.
* Disciples make new disciples m- professions of faith;
* Disciples worship – worship attendance;
* Disciples grow and mature in their faith – number of small faith-
development groups;
*Disciples engage in mission- number o members engaged in community and worldwide mission;
*Disciples give generously to mission – the amount of money given to mission.
5. Pray for and work with your laity, superintendent, and bishops to grow
the unity within the church, grow trust within congregations and the
denominations, and increase the ability of the church to engage in
listening and conversation with non-religious and nominally religious
people in the community.

-From the Council of Bishops of The United Methodist Church

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