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President's Column

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  How to best serve this congregation during these very difficult times has been a frequent topic of conversation among Board members.  It was the open question at our meeting on the July 19.  The conversations always seem to focus on one primary question - how can we, your Board of Directors, show the congregation our strong commitment to the mission and vision of this church and ensure the congregation that we will not shrink from our work to make this a better world even when the chaos and violence of the last several weeks happens within several miles of us?  On-going support of our work with Together Baton Rouge and our on-going anti-racism work are two ways.  However, the crafting of the Annual Vision of Ministry is the primary mechanism for the Board to demonstrate its strong commitment to the important work of this church.  Under Policy Governance, this annual vision provides the framework for the work of the staff in the applicable year.  Below is the 2016 Annual Vision of Ministry that was finalized in May:

 1.  Nurture and engage all people in our community;

 2.  Guide and support transitions and transformations within the church

      a) Policy Governance transition and full implementation post Governances Task Force;

      b) Senior Minister sabbatical;

      c) RE staff transition; and

      d) Great Expectation administration and support 

 3.  Create a safe space in which to deepen our internal and external work on becoming anti-racist, anti-oppressive, and multicultural. 

      Another important way for us to help lead this church in times of crisis (and in times of calm) is to show up and be present.  At the May retreat, all board members received gold nametags.   We proudly wear them to clearly identify us as members of your Board.  So, look for us on Sunday morning and know that we are always ready to talk or to listen. 

      Together, we will get through these dark days.  Be safe and be very gentle with yourselves, and also be very proud that your church is here and standing strong in its work to make this a better world.             In shared community and love, Melanie Mayeux, August 1, 2016