New Beginnings Report to the Congregation
September 14, 2014
In June 2014, the Condit Church embarked on a process called ‘New Beginnings’ that was developed by the Presbyterian Mission Agency Office of Church Growth. It was designed to help a struggling church in three ways. The first goal of the process was to help the congregation to come to clarity about decisions that need to be made in regard to the use of the assets/resources for mission. Secondly, it gives congregational leaders tools for defining a future story in mission that is relevant for the 21st century. The third intent is to help the congregation to switch from an attractional model of ministry where people ‘go to church’ to a missional model of ministry where disciples are empowered to ‘go from the church’ to live as Christian witnesses in the world.
The process consisted of group meetings at various people’s homes each week for six weeks to discuss New Beginnings topics. At Condit, we had 5 different groups meet. The group leaders formed the New Beginnings Steering team. After the final weekly meeting, the Steering Team summarized the findings from their groups and that information is what will be shared in this report.
The congregation believes the Condit Church building is still well suited for our purpose. We do not think the Church should move to another location.
The groups analyzed which strategy they thought would be best to move Condit forward. Of the choices given in New Beginnings, the consensus was to redefine the mission. To decide where our focus should be, the demographic data from the New Beginnings report was used. The data shows a large number of young families in the area. We think this presents an opportunity to serve Christ by helping these families to be successful.
The congregation has passion to do things differently. As a group, people are not sure what to do differently. In several of the weekly group meetings, we were asked to brainstorm actions members could take that would more missional in approach. The Steering Team summarized those actions and shared the list of 41 actions with the congregation. We asked for people to think about the actions and decide if they would be willing to lead any of them. We recognize that a church our size cannot effectively take on 41 new projects. Our plan is to see how many actions we have volunteers to lead and decide which of those actions we should do first.
The criterion to select the most impactful actions will include; is it missional with a target of supporting young families, or does it involve members getting out into the community to meet our neighbors. We feel that getting out to meet our neighbors is key to all our efforts. When our neighbors get to know congregation members as people, they are more likely to get involved with our church.


Once actions are selected, the volunteer leader will take the responsibility to see their action through to completion. They will keep in touch with Mick Sheets on progress and he will share the status with the Condit Session.

A parallel path is being led by Donna Rhodeback. She and Jayne Strouse are contacting various agencies in our area to see if any of them have unmet needs that our congregation can help fill. As opportunities arise, they will communicate those needs to the Condit Session.

We know this is going to be difficult for all of us. As a congregation, we have to get behind this process and share our passion and energy to serve God with the area. Like many of you, I was raised in this church. Pam and I were married here. None of us want to see the Condit Church continue to decline. Please do your part to help usher in a New Beginning for Condit.

Mick Sheets