Weekly e-newsletter for members and friends of the Dublin Community Church
February 20, 2009
Paddling with Shiraz
I send these E-Grams out every week and I usually document the secular part of my existence. Yet, I suppose if you read enough of these things you come to realize that I am documenting my spiritual existence also. Perhaps I don’t wear my “Jesus-y” stuff on my sleeve.
This week is no different on THAT account. But, this week is different in that I am going to get specific about a project here at the church I serve. I usually stay away from programming and the day-to-day stuff of Dublin Community Church. Why? Probably because I write the Prologues and sermons and those are specific to the congregation in my role as Senior Minister. There is that other part of me that likes kayaking, OSU football, Steely Dan, Paul Theroux, The New York Times, sand road around Big Bass Lake, and Shiraz… and for some reason I have the urge to write about all those things in the E-Grams like this. It gives me an outlet. It gives me a chance to focus on things other than the church, and that gives me balance.
But, as I said, today is different. Today I am going to write about Dublin Community Church and the Capital Campaign program on which we have embarked. Today I am going to talk about the leader of the Campaign and the Campaign itself.
This Campaign has been a long time in the planning but it has been a fascinating journey for me. I never thought I would enjoy the minutiae of facts and figures. I never thought I would care to be a part of a capital fund drive but I have surprised myself. It is an interesting journey.
The key to this has been the realization of just which ministries and missions we could expand when this mortgage was addressed. We went to Committees and Council and found out what this church feels called to address and the answer, as has been well-documented in numerous letters…1.Full-Time Associate Minister 2. Youth and Mission funding 3.Building & Grounds upkeep.
We studied, planned, prayed, and discussed all of this with countless meetings. And the key, besides having all the Council, Committees and Congregation on board was to choose THE leader of the campaign. This was a crucial moment. We needed THE person who would take this thing and fly.
I won’t reveal whose great idea it was to approach Dr. Tom Anderson concerning taking the role of leader, but it WAS inspired. And…he was the only one we approached.
My phone call with Dr. Anderson was the second “AHA!” moment of this campaign for me. (The first was 3 years ago when I found out about the mortgage. I detailed that moment last week in my sermon.) This second “AHA!” moment was last Spring when I phoned Dr. Anderson with the invitation to lead the Campaign. Without hesitation he agreed. I had mentally set aside a few “persuasive” arguments to insert into the conversation but he had pre-empted my entire list by readily agreeing to lead. Then he hit me with something I was totally not expecting. He said… “I would be honored to lead this campaign.”
It was then that I knew this campaign would be a success. By success, I am not necessarily implying that we will pay off all $1.5 million of the existing mortgage. But, I knew we would be successful with the campaign itself. I knew it would be carefully led, logistically solid and prayerfully attended to.
Indeed, I would love to pay it all off…increase our ministries….and ride off into the sunset with the pretty girl at my side. It may happen too (the debt reduction part, not the riding off into the sunset part), but there is a greater issue here at stake. Our integrity as a church.
If this Campaign is run with openness, honesty, a clear goal in mind and respect for the people whom we approach; we will come out all right. The way we conduct this campaign is more important than whether we reach $1.5 million or not. The journey is more important than the goal.
Whatever we receive in commitments will be paid down on the mortgage. We will possibly re-finance if the banks agree to do so. We will apply those savings to decreasing our mortgage and we will look at implementing those designated ministries and then we will move on.
That will be accomplished with Dr. Tom Anderson. The campaign has integrity and focus and in that respect, we will come out all right. We have an accomplished group of leaders who quite frankly, have been fun to work with over the past year. These people on the inner circle have an amazing array of skills. I attend meetings and find myself enjoying the breadth of their expertise in finance, advertising, and dedication to the ministries of Dublin Community Church.
Now, it is your turn. Join Dr. Anderson this Sunday Feb 22 at 9 am at church for an informal Question and Answer period. Bring your Red Folders. He will also be at church on Sunday March 1 and March 8…also at 9 am. Come to the parlor. Andersons and Chi Weber will be offering gathering times in their homes. More on that as the weeks progress.
We will receive the Commitment Cards on Sunday March 15…a month from now. We can honor those Commitments over the next three years.
So, am I then going to go riding off into the sunset? No, but I might consider kayaking off onto the Scioto.
Peace, Rev. Bob Tussing