Sun, Jun 06, 2021
Quick disclaimer: Many of the items warrant much more detail, as they involve some big changes, but that detail’s gonna have to come a little at a time over the next few weeks and months. If you’ve got questions about them, please don’t hesitate to track down me, your Campus Pastor, or an Elder.
College/Young Adults/20somethings’ Vision and Preview Night this Tue, Jun 8, 7-8p, in the Student Center at the Greeneville Campus! – For details, go to the top of the Home page on the app (fccgreene.org/app) or fccgreene.org/cya20s, but in basic terms, we need you to help us get the word out to any/all recent high school grads, current college students, and 20-something young adults that this Tuesday is a 1-hr preview night. Please be praying with us that God will use our efforts as a church (and David Bowlin’s leadership!) to reach and care for young adults.
Bluegrass & BBQ Team Bash, Sun, Jun 13, 6-8p – HURRY UP, AS SIGN-UPS CLOSE SOON! – Seriously, do not miss this! Not only do we have some really cool stuff planned, (like, in addition to food, music, and laughter, the Team Code Awards, a highlight video, and a couple important first-time-in-public announcements/introductions), but it’s a really important part of who we are at FCC and it’s one of the rare opportunities we’ve had lately to gather across campuses!
- “What have you learned by serving at church?” We need your help putting together our Team Bash highlight video this week, like… now… please… fill out this form and help us out! > fccgreene.org/tb2021?
- Sign-up here: Go to the top of the Home page on the app or fccgreene.org/teambash to register!
- Bring: a chair for each person, maybe also a blanket
- Where? The Shed on Snapps Ferry Rd, across from Food City
- Who can come? The Team Bash is for anyone who has served, in any capacity, with any frequency, ever, and it’s for anyone who has never served or who might be brand-new to FCC or who may simply like Bluegrass and BBQ and want to check us out!
Bob Radank is our Brand-Spanking New Full-Time Next Steps/Missions Director! – I have no idea what “brand-spanking” really means, but I’m gonna assume the etymology is pure and that I’m okay to use it as a way for me to say, “We’ve never had someone focused on getting people more deeply connected and committed to taking practical steps of spiritual growth like this, but how awesome is it that we can because it’s going to help us immensely?!”
Bob and Kelly Radank have been married for 16 years, in missions and ministry in the US and Germany for even longer than that, and have 3 kids (13, 9, and 4). There’s much more to say about Bob and his family, how he’s eminently qualified, how we came to this conclusion about needing this position, what our longer-term plans are, etc., but suffice it to say that, as your Lead Pastor, (whom you at least theoretically trust to “Lead” us, at a staff/organization level!), I can tell you that Bob is going to do a great job! He loves the local church, has a lot of ministry experience, has planted and led a church in Germany, and has a vision for disciplemaking.
So this Thu, Jun 10, Bob officially starts helping us more fully and practically champion and implement our 7 Habits growth plans throughout our entire organization. That will mean developing a team of Next Steps Mentors who will be trained and equipped to help our people implement their 7 Habits Growth Plan that is tailored to individual needs and helps them stay focused and growing, kind of like having a personal spiritual growth coach to help get well connected. This ministry area has a LOT of potential to help us more effectively help our people grow, especially as we go to 3 campuses. (See below.) Also, as the Radanks have been missionaries in Germany until some combination of God and Covid changed their plans and brought them to us, Bob is also going to help us communicate with and develop our relationships with the missionaries and ministries with whom we partner. So, while Next Steps will be his primary focus, there are some cool possibilities here, in the long term. Wow, now that I write all that out, that’s a big task.
Please give a hearty and personal FCC welcome to the Radanks when you see them. They’ll begin worshipping with us Sun, Jun 13.
When are we launching our 3rd Campus? – (This first paragraph is a repeat of last week, in case you missed it.) So… lots of detail to manage, behind-the-scenes stuff yet to do, and, soon enough, letter/communications from the Elders and public meetings and small financial campaign and promo and yard signs to make happen, but it is now officially something we are working toward in earnest. Since our overall thinking as a multisite church is guided by a structure that supports a “campus launching strategy”, our Elders and Pastors are continually monitoring our fitness for doing so, (see “Factors in Launching Campuses” in the recent ST from May 9), and we believe God is putting together the many things needed for us to work toward doing so sometime between mid-October through early-December 2021!
Here’s some new stuff/updates…
- We have met with South Greene HS and can confirm that we are working toward launching there! Please begin praying for them, the faculty/staff, their ministry to the students there, and for God to make clear how best to proceed. Now, please know that there are still many behind-the-scenes things to do and details that might keep us from moving forward, perhaps/probably even still needing to go before the Board of Education. So please pray about all those details.
- We have a portable multisite expert coming mid-June to walk through SGHS with us and begin to engineer plans. One cool thing we’re going to try to do is more permanently install as much of the tech equipment we need before we even launch. We hope that communicates our long-term plans of being #ForSouthGreene, adds long-term value to the high school, and makes portability easier.
- I’ve mentioned this a couple times, but one tweak we’re making to our multisite campus launching strategy (that many multisite churches are doing nationwide) is focusing on smaller campus-size. So, while we launched Afton with a goal of 225 adults committed to serving at Afton (if I’m remembering correctly), now we are shooting for somewhere around 75 adults committed to serving at SGHS from both our existing campuses. There’s much more to say about all this, with regard to specifics of the launch team, etc., but this is important to think about now: Before deciding on your own that you want to go to SGHS, it would be most helpful for you to begin by praying and discussing it with your Campus Pastor. Don’t automatically jump into the fray of helping us launch SGHS without considering how it might affect the ministry of your current campus and discussing that with your CP. We need to launch new campuses while wisely considering the vacuums left at existing campuses. (See #7 “Factors in Launching Campuses”.)
- For the record, Afton peeps, if you’re concerned about “not needing” to go to 3 campuses because we’ve got lots of space left at Afton, please know that we are already basically at functional capacity at Gville, we won’t likely take many from Afton compared to Gville, we only need 75 adults committed to serving, and from our experience, not only will all campuses grow during the launch season, but new folks will come out of the woodwork not just to attend, but also to serve (we hope… and pray… and work toward making happen.)
So anyway, please pray with us about… all that. More details as we know them.
Your Ongoing Faithful Giving Is So Important – Frankly, we don’t really talk about money much around here. I do one sermon and a couple blurbs/updates like this per year, the Elders send out a Thank You letter, and that’s about it. Sure, I do a lot of verbal and ST Thank Yous, but we don’t do yearly pledges and much in the way of capital campaigns because our basic philosophy is to simply ask people to Pursue generosity. and then the Elders prayerfully guides/leads and the Staff executes a ministry that wisely stewards that money to match our vision and strategy.
But, as we’re making a number of big changes to continue reaching out to our county/community, I’m struck, again, for the nth time, by how important it to foster a culture where our people faithfully Pursue generosity. You see, our strategy is to continually spend less than we bring in, and that’s been a way for us to successfully build enough reserves to move forward when it’s clear that it’s time (like now!) to launch a new campus, hire a new staffer, start a new ministry, etc. That strategy has meant that, from right after launching into multisite in early 2019 until now, we’ve gone from a little less than $100k total liquid assets (early 2019) to ~$400k now. That means we can hire a Part-Time College/Young Adults/20something Director and a Full-Time Next Steps/Missions Dir and begin working toward launching a 3rd campus when we know we need them and the time is right, which is great!
So, two things…
- Thank you for your faithful financial support. Our ministry together (and my kids being fed and clothed!) depend on it. Please know we do not take for granted your faithfulness in giving from a heart of praise to God for His work in Christ!
- We are by no means flush with funds. We are headed into a time, as happened with the first multisite campus launch, where our reserves and weekly inflow/outflow go down to what I’m gonna call the Make-Scott-An-Emotional-Wreck stage. (And that’s saying something because he’s basically an emotional wreck when things are totally awesome!) So, right now, we are entering into a time of wittingly wisely risking because we believe God has big plans for us to continue moving forward to reach the lost in Greene County for the gospel. The $25k “to the good” (from Jan-Apr 2021) that I reported in a previous ST needs your ongoing support because, well, again, we are entering a time of wittingly wisely risking because we believe God has big plans for us. Please don’t let up in your generosity because you have a perception that we don’t need your financial help. We do.
Pine Cove City Wrap-Up – Again, bigtime thanks to so many who prayed for the kids, signed up your kids, helped get other kids registered, donated for scholarships, hosted camp counselors, and volunteered as Nurses! It was a really great week and we couldn’t have made it happen without your participation! (I love seeing dozens of FCCers jump in, carry the mission/registration baton, volunteer, contribute financially, etc.) A few highlights:
- We had 90 kids, which is a great turnout considering we’re still dealing with Covid fears, it was a holiday week (Memorial Day), the first week of summer, and Greene County Schools (with whom we were trying to partner, to send some kids free) were strongly pushing their own free day camp (and not ours, which I wouldn’t expect them to do! Not frustrated about it; just adding the detail as explanation.) So, them’s really good numbers, considering.
- The PCC Crew was sooo good, y’all. Very attentive, intentional, gospel-focused, and, if it wasn’t clear from our highlight videos, cuhrazy energetic! 2 out of 2 for our experience with their organization’s training of these (mostly) college students.
- One of the best parts of the week is that each counselor is watching, thinking, and praying about 3 personal characteristics that they see in each kid that speak to how they see that God uniquely made them. Then they end the week by communicating those 3 characteristics to the child and parent. They were spot-on with my 8-yr-old kiddo: bold, eager, capable.
- Highlight Videos are at fccgreene.org/pcchighlights.