Touché October 31, 2014
Posted on October 31, 2014 by under Touché,

Leadership Next

“20 years ago, the Leadership Summit began. I had come to the conclusion that pretty much everything that matters in this world rises and falls on leadership. Two decades later, I stand before you with an even deeper conviction of the role of leadership”

   Bill Hybels as he began the 2014 Global Leadership Summit

This fall four of our best leaders will finish their terms on Consistory.  Our structure is such that you are elected to a three year term and you may be reelected to another three year term, but, at the end of six years you are at your “term limits.”   Shireen Gilbert and Stephanie Patton have served six years as elders.  These are women of grace and quiet guidance that have led well in their leadership in the church.  We celebrate their service and will miss them in this important role of ministry.  Mike Reynolds and Mike Boyd (the two Mikes as they are referred to on consistory) have also reached their term limits.  They have reshaped the financial reporting and budget methodology as well as the structure for ministry of the church.  They have brought an appreciation for best practices from business to the consistory.  They have not been as gentle as Stephanie and Shireen, but they have been most effective in fulfilling the role that God has called them to in this church. We owe them a debt of gratitude for their service.

With such an outstanding class of leaders stepping off consistory it encourages us to pay attention to whom we shall elect for the next generation of leaders at HRC.  For the next three weeks our Connection Cards will include a space to nominate elders and deacons.  At the November meeting, consistory will consider those nominations and begin to develop a slate to be presented at our congregational meeting on the second Sunday of January (the 11th).  I hope you will take the time to think and pray about the people who you would recommend to lead us into the next stages of going “Deep and Wide in Hopewell Junction.”  I encourage you to think of younger leaders who have the potential to grow into God-given leadership as they are sensitive to some of the emerging issues before the church.

Here are the words of definition that come from our liturgy:


Deacons and elders are called to serve as Christ served. We look to them to be people of spiritual commitment, exemplary life, compassionate spirit, and sound judgment.


Deacons are set apart for a ministry of mercy, service, and outreach. They gather gifts and offerings, care for them faithfully, and distribute them with wisdom and compassion to persons in need and for purposes that advance God’s kingdom on earth. Deacons visit and comfort the distressed, provide for whatever necessities may arise, and assist the congregation at services of worship.


Elders are set apart for a ministry of watchful and responsible care for the welfare and order of the church. They have oversight of all members, including one another, the deacons, and the ministers, equipping everyone to live in harmony with God’s Word. They ensure the Word of God is rightly proclaimed and taught, and the sacraments faithfully administered. Elders assist the minister with their good counsel, and serve all Christians with advice, consolation, and encouragement. Elders and deacons, together with the minister, form the consistory to lead God’s people in proclaiming good news to the poor, righteousness to the nations, and peace among all.

 The consistory provides for the welfare of the church, stewardship of property and finance, and the spiritual benefit and growth of all Christ’s people.

 As the three offices of deacon, elder, and minister of Word and sacrament, are united in Christ, so also in the church one office is not separate from the others. The minister of Word and sacrament does not serve without the elder and neither without the deacon. Together they enable the whole mission of the church. Everything in the church will be done decently and in order when faithful persons are called to office, and responsibly fulfil their charge.

 Let us be faithful in that charge,


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