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Parish Planning Session
by Archpriest Andrew Harrison

Early on a Saturday morning in March our Parish Council gathered for a workshop to solve problems and set goals for 1999. The day started with morning prayers and daily Bible readings. First on the agenda was the presentation of the results of the Keirsey Temperament Sorter. This is a series of 70 questions which determine personality preferences. It reveals whether we are an extravert or an introvert. It shows whether we tend to be led by our thoughts or feelings. It determines if we take in our environment through our senses or by intuition. It expresses how we make decisions. The reason for this test was to show how the council members function. It celebrates differences as gifts of the Holy Spirit and reveals how each temperament enhances the work of the council. In addition it helps in understanding differences to avoid divisions and misunderstandings which can lead to anger and dissention.

After lunch Mike Bauml guided the council members in a brainstorming session to set goals for the coming year. The results are as follows:

Youth Organization

*Build long lasting friendships among the youth by setting up and completing monthly social and religious activities which have been planned a year in advance. * 50% attendance at Summer Camp

Charities

*Meet once a month to decide which organization will receive donations. *Place a description of the organization in the newsletter. *Visit The Port, Oak Forest Hospital and encourage YO to participate in these visitations.

Maintenance

*Complete five preventative maintenance projects. *Support the building committee. * Supervise church service projects for YO and Cub Scouts.

Supplies

*Continue to obtain the best price on supplies. *New altar boy robes, blue vestments for Fr. Andrew.

Secretary

*Minutes completed by the 2nd Sunday following the meeting. *Develop mini-minutes for the Evangelist and Calendar of Events.

Treasurer

*Maintain a balanced budget. *Have funds available to pay bills on time * Stewardship Committee will begin campaign in September .* Develop better dissemination of financial information. * Develop and implement a stewardship program for the children.

Fellowship

*Develop and implement a yearly cycle of monthly fellowship events. * Organize a duel functioning committee to oversee annual event and special events.* Involve non council members in planning events.

Resource/Bookstore

*More reading of religious books among parishioners by maintaining reduced price 10/15% and giving out some free books.* Publishing a book review in the Evangelist four times a year. *Expand video library by purchasing video display rack.

Outreach

*Pray that our church will grow by 15%, *Develop an in-reach program which includes networking, reaching out to our own members to develop long lasting friendship between members. * Twenty members attend the Evangelism conference. * Update and re-design information pamphlet, * Print personal testimonies in the Evangelist. *Increased attendance in weekly Outreach and Bible study programs. *Develop and train the laity in evangelism techniques.

Music

*Present liturgical music from all traditions, *Train male singers. *Print and distribute St Basil Liturgy Books. *Sponsor Byzantine Music workshop, *Attend Music workshop at the Antiocian village.

Lay Chairperson

*New Church complex built with as little conflict as possible. *Complete Icon projects. *Focus on spiritual growth by developing activities which stimulate members to grow in Christ. *Be sensitive to any criticism of other faith groups.

Priest

*Increase punctuality and attendance in divine services. *Increase knowledge level of the Orthodox faith and methods of evangelism. * Increase total giving 10% through tithing, *Become more visible in the community through media and charitable activities. * Actively seek out fallen away Orthodox Christians

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