2017 ANNUAL REPORT
Friends, This past year marked the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther posting his 95 theses on the door of the cathedral in Wittenberg, Germany, launching the Protestant Reformation. Cultural shifts with regard to institutional religion, changes in demographic realities, and emerging expressions of Christianity suggest that the faith may be entering another significant period of reformation. In her book, The Great Emergence, Phyllis Tickle suggests this happens in Christianity every 500 years. So, we’re due! In the midst of such macro change, MPPC finds itself in the midst of its own season of change. In the first quarter of this year, the Session approved a new Mission Statement. It reads: Claimed by the love of God in Jesus Christ, we are called into this community of faith living out our love for God in worship, study, and service, loving and supporting one another as we join God’s transforming work in our city and in the world. “Living out love” is the summary statement of our mission—living out love for God, for one another, and for the wider world. A number of testimony videos highlighting some of the ways we live out love have been featured in our worship services. Guided by this mission statement, the Session elected a Discernment Team in the second quarter of the year, which is being led by Averill Harkey and Turner Herbert. They developed four core strategic questions that our councils are currently considering. Informed by our current context for ministry and Scripture’s call to the community of faith, these
1. How can our ministry build a strong church community and encourage belonging through shared experiences in Christ? 2. How can your ministry use interactive technology to build genuine relationships in Christ? 3. How can your ministry facilitate reconciliation within the walls of this church and beyond? 4. How is Christ calling us to respond to the reality that a child born in poverty in Charlotte is more likely to remain in poverty than in any other city in our nation? In the coming year, we will all be engaging these questions as we seek to discern God’s call to our church, and shape a strategy for responding to this call. In the midst of these organizational shifts, our staff also endured significant change. We said goodbye to Von Clemans, the longest tenured Associate Pastor in the history of the church, who retired after 45 years in ministry in the Presbyterian Church, the past 18 years with us. We also bid farewell to Derek Macleod as he accepted God’s call to become the next pastor at St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church in Wilmington, NC. Their departures led to a restructuring of our staff that will enable us to respond to new challenges and opportunities, including the evolution of a new Pastoral Residency Program. “I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord through the prophet Jeremiah, “plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.” (Jer. 29:11) Confident in God’s promise, we give thanks for the blessings of this past year, and we look with hope to the coming year, trusting God’s providence to guide us all the way. Love in Christ,
Joe Clifford Pastor
Discernment Team: There is no doubt that we are in an age of religious transformation and transition. Our church must be meaningfully engaged in this effort. In response, our Session commissioned a Discernment Team in May of 2017. The “charge” was complex and comprehensive. In essence, the Team was charged with “discerning God’s path forward for the life and ministry of Myers Park Presbyterian Church as we join God’s transforming work in our local and global community of faith.” The team is evaluating all areas of the life of our church: • • • • • • •
Worship Adult and Youth Faith Formation Governance Stewardship Finance Pastoral Care Administration
• • • • • • •
Technology Mission Outreach Youth Congregational Life Weekday School Wellness
The evaluation involves an extensive collaborative process of information sharing and idea development with our officers, clergy, staff, lay leadership, members and community partners. We are encouraging all to “think big and outside the box” as we seek bold initiatives and dreams that are capable of becoming measurable objectives to be included in a definitive strategic plan. On January 27, 2018 we had a Dream Day gathering of all the church leaders, staff and clergy as we strive for a collective understanding and development of the path ahead. Our goal is to have a report to share with the Session in mid 2018. We ask for your continued prayers and comments as we move forward together under the leadership of Jesus Christ as the Head of our Church. AVERILL HARKEY, DISCERNMENT COMMITTEE CHAIR
Administration Council Administration Council is comprised of Finance, Personnel, Facilities, Communication, and Food Services. We encompass the base structure and support to follow our calling as God’s church and deploy our ministries. There are many moving parts and diverse functions throughout our council from setting the annual budget, creating organizational structure, and caring for our campus, but we also drive community conversation, educate about our ministries, and support those ministries with meal options. We attempt to provide an efficient shell allowing our members to worship, and grow in faith, as well as be supported and loved while we join in God’s transformative work in this world. R. BYRON BROWN, IV, ADMINISTRATION COUNCIL CHAIR
COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE: Communications at Myers Park Presbyterian Church is an ever-changing art! Touch-points include the website, social media, video/flatscreen, CONNECT, Serve & Grow, Journey, signage and seasonal marketing. Did you know we also now have an App for convenient access to our blogs, podcasts, daily devotions, sermons and Livestream worship? In 2017, the communications team developed a branding campaign - Living Out Love - guided by the mission statement adopted by the Session in January. Much of the new branding strategy involved the production of a 15-video series highlighting MPPC members at work in ministry. With the hiring of a new Communications Coordinator, MPPC’s social media presence has been refined and a special effort has been made to create an online community among our members. Looking forward to 2018, we will evaluate our current communications strategies for relevance and cost-effectiveness. We will also continue to find new and creative ways to connect with our congregation to lift up and highlight ministry opportunities, support systems and outreach partnerships.
BETSY GANTT, COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE CHAIR
FACILITIES COMMITTEE: The facilities committee has been busy in 2017, and has completed several of the planned projects for the year including: •
Repair and replacement of the cork flooring in the sanctuary
Completed first phase of the exterior lighting project
Repaved the parking lots around the main campus
Completed the Week Day School Playground renovation with security feature
Looking forward to 2018, the following projects are in process: •
New seat cushions for the sanctuary: arrival in January/February 2018
Stained glass window repair on the west side of the sanctuary: work to be done in February
Replacement of 2001 van - delivery of Ford E450 scheduled for March
Second phase of exterior lighting project
CHARLIE STEWART, FACILITIES COMMITTEE CHAIR
PERSONNEL COMMITTEE: 2017 Accomplishments: •
Updated the cafeteria plan for staff benefits.
Conducted a national compensation study to review position salary ranges.
Updated policies pertaining to salary and performance evaluations.
Revised the position descriptions and structure of the stewardship staff. Began search for the new position of Director of Development, Major Gifts, and Planned Giving.
Worked with the Pastor and Head of Staff on a revised transitional staff reorganization plan.
Worked on replacement plans for Human Resources Director, Organist, Halfday Weekday School Director, Stewardship Director, Director of Outreach, and Associate Pastors, as well as various staff support positions.
2018 Objectives: •
Complete searches for Director of Development, Major Gifts, and Planned Giving; Mission Coordinator; Parish Associate; and Associate Pastor for Discipleship.
Update staff relations teams and provide executive coaching support to Pastor.
Continue work to improve performance evaluation process.
Review and make any adjustments to member employment policies. ALLEN WOODWARD, PERSONNEL COMMITTEE CHAIR
NEW STAFFING STRUCTURE:* Additionally, a motion to create a new staffing structure for MPPC was proposed and approved by Session in the fall of 2017. This structure involves three major changes: Restructuring Adult Faith Formation and Outreach Ministries •
Create a new Associate Pastor for Discipleship, with management responsibilities for Adult Faith Formation and resourcing Outreach ministries
Eliminate the Associate Pastor for Adult Faith Formation and the Associate Pastor for Outreach Ministries positions
Create a new Director of Outreach position (FT), and keep Mission Coordinator (PT)
Restructuring Pastoral Care and Congregational Life •
Move responsibility for Congregational Life, (excluding Wellness Ministry) to Associate Pastor for Pastoral Care
Call Parish Associate (PT) to help with pastoral care responsibilities
Change title from Associate Pastor for Pastoral Care to Associate Pastor for Congregational Care
Changing job description for Executive Pastor, including all Associate Pastors reporting to the Executive Pastor, and EP assuming responsibility for Pastoral Residency Program. JOE CLIFFORD, PASTOR / HEAD OF STAFF
Conclusion: With challenge comes opportunity. I believe that is what this new structure provides us. We are able to meet the challenges presented by the current budget situation, as well as organize our staff to meet the future opportunities as they arise. This plan is called our “Transitional Plan”, as we will need to maintain flexibility to respond to the Strategic Plan as it evolves from the work of the Discernment Team. While change is never easy, I believe this change positions us very well to continue to answer God’s call to Myers Park Presbyterian Church in the midst of our changing world. *See the MPPC Staff Organizational Chart on the next spread to see changes JOE CLIFFORD, PASTOR / HEAD OF STAFF
FINANCE COMMITTEE: In 2018, the Finance Committee is looking forward to embracing the opportunities and challenges of facilitating the ongoing ministries of the church. Having received the generous pledge commitments of many members, we will be working closely with the ministry councils and the Discernment Team to discern key priorities for ministry. Specifically, we will work towards meeting the Session goal of increasing mission expenditures while balancing the needs of our campus and facilities and the need for nurturing the pastoral care, life, and education of our church community. We intend to work on communication and transparency while balancing income and expenditures. TRACY WATTS , FINANCE COMMITTEE CHAIR
MPPC Staff Orga
Director of Development, Major Gifts, and Planned Giving
Project Accountant (PT)
AV Tech Director
Human Resources Director
Human Resource Assistant (PT)
Facilities Set-Up Coordinator
Food Service Manager
Information Technology Support
Food Service Assistant (PT)
AA Administration Council
Middle School Director
CONSTANT CHANGING CONTRACT
High School Coordinator (PT)
Session Approved 12/04/2017
astor/ d of Staff
AA Pastor/ Head of Staff
AP Congregational Care
Faith Formation, Stewardship Edu, Outreach
AA Executive Pastor/ Discipleship
Parish Associate (PT)
Celebrate Music Leader (PT)
AA Congregational Care
Celebrate Band/Sound Technician (PT)
New Member Coordinator (PT)
Children/Youth Music Coordinator (PT )
Asst. CROSS Director
Member Engagement Coordinator (PT)
Children's Choir Accompanist (PT)
Parish Nurse (PT)
Children's Choir Assistant (PT)
Mission Coordinator (PT)
Ministry Interns & Pastoral Residency Program
Membership & Database Coordinator
AA Children/ Youth
Preschool Coordinator (PT)
Childcare Workers (PT)
Elementary Coordinator (PT)
Weekday School Managing Director
Half-Day School Managing Director
Wellness Program Assistant
AA Weekday School
AA Half-Day School (PT)
Wellness Program Manager
Half-Day School Teachers
Adult Faith Formation Adult Faith Formation helps members of our church grow as disciples of Jesus Christ, offering many program opportunities and resources: •
In-depth study through Disciple Bible Studies
On-going Sunday School classes, some of which were established decades ago
Discipleship classes on Sundays, with lessons from the Bible, applications for today’s society
Weekly Bible studies, small groups, book discussions
Leadership training for elders, deacons
Expert instructors from our clergy, our membership, our city, our world In June 2017, we celebrated the retirement of Von Clemans following a long and full career spent in our Savior’s ministry. We are so very thankful for Von’s 18 years of faithful service to our congregation, as Associate Pastor for Christian Education, with dedication, talent and love!
JIM SHAFFNER, ADULT FAITH FORMATION COUNCIL CHAIR
Adult Sunday School Classes offered
Average weekly attendance in adult classes and studies
Net expenses in 2017 for Adult Faith Formation
ADULT FAITH FORMATION
ADULT FAITH FORMATION
ADULT FAITH FORMATION
Friendship Trays delivered by Mission Kids the Wednesday before Thanksgiving
Bibles presented to 3rd graders
Children and their parents at the Young Families Advent party
CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES
CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES
CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES
89 Babies baptized
CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES
112 Bowls of popcorn eaten as Tapestry Movie Night, Special Needs Ministry CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES
Children and Family Ministries Children and Family Ministries partners with parents to develop young disciples of Jesus Christ. From welcoming children and birth and baptism, to nurturing faith formation in the Weekday School and in Sunday School, to walking alongside families in our milestones workshops and mission projects, we seek meaningful ministry opportunities with children and their families. In 2018 Children and Family Ministries will continue to deepen our engagement with families in our core ministries: Sunday School and worship, VBS, Faith Milestone events, mission opportunities, and the Weekday School. Other ministry teams will work at building relationships among families as we seek to make a large church a welcoming place where all belong. The Weekday School will embark on a strategic planning initiative to look towards the future. We will focus on developing and equipping more lay leadership at every level, so our disciples of all ages can live out love together. LIZA SIPPE, CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES COUNCIL CHAIR
Volunteers serving 240 children at VBS
Worship bags filled in 2017
CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES
CHILDREN AND FAMILY MINISTRIES
Clerk’s Council The ministry teams that comprise the Clerk’s Council handle a variety of activities on behalf of the Session. Near term activities include recommending officer assignments (Assignments) and facilitating our relationship with the larger church (Denominational Relations). Longer term activities include developing a residency program for seminary students (Pastoral Residency) and defining the strategic direction for MPPC (Discernment). 2018 will be an exciting year as we prepare for our first pastoral residents. We also look forward to the report and recommendations of the Discernment Team as we chart our path forward as a congregation. BOB MCKINNEY, CLERK OF SESSION
PASTORAL RESIDENCY PROGRAM:
The Denominational Relations team helps to facilitate a closer relationship between MPPC and the Presbyterian Church (USA). Activities include sponsoring individuals who are inquiring about a future in the ministry, and working with the Presbytery of Charlotte on various projects. For example, the Denominational Relations team will help to plan the Presbytery meeting that will be held at MPPC in May 2018. In addition to building relationships, this team also oversees any financial matters between MPPC and our denomination, including contributions to the Board of Pensions and the Presbytery.
MPPC is on schedule to bring our first Resident on board in late summer 2018, and funding has been secured to support the first two Residents that we hire. The recent re-structuring of staff allows Millie to serve as Residency Coordinator although Joe will remain actively involved with the program. Millie is involved in recruiting efforts with seminaries, the development of materials describing our program to potential candidates, and the development of a curriculum for supervision and training which will expose Residents to the various staff and ministries at MPPC. There will be a component involving exposure to ministry in smaller churches, as that is likely to be the Resident’s second call after leaving MPPC. A Residency Team is being formed to help with the application process, offer lay support to the Resident by meeting regularly with them, and provide feedback for preaching and teaching opportunities.
ROB ATKINS, DENOMINATIONAL RELATIONS CHAIR
BILL WARREN, PASTORAL RESIDENCY CHAIR
14 Ministry Mentors
Congregational Life offers hospitality and nurtures and encourages community within the life of the congregation. We help members connect with one another to support and care for each other and to serve together in ministry, fellowship, worship and service. In 2018, we hope to broaden and deepen the engagement of our church members, whether new members or long-time members who donâ€™t feel connected. We hope to continue the successful programs that are currently in place and grow the new programs started in 2017. MEREDITH LONG, CONGREGATIONAL LIFE COUNCIL CHAIR
Number of children ages 0-18 whose parents joined MPPC in 2017
New members joined between the ages of 30-49 years old
Total new members who joined in 2017 (excluding confirmands)
Outreach Through partnerships in Charlotte and around the world Outreach Ministry will continue to respond to Jesus’ invitation to love God and love our neighbor as ourselves. MPPC’s Outreach Ministries invite us to fall in love with God’s world and God’s people. In 2018, MPPC disciples will continue to serve alongside 22 local ministry partners and support 7 global relationships assisting each with dignity and grace as love builds up a child, a home, a neighborhood, and a world. Through active discipleship and prayerful discernment, Outreach Ministry teams will grow in faith together and build relationships that transcend economic, racial and cultural differences. In this upcoming year, MPPC’s Outreach Ministry will deepen its understanding and strengthen our congregation’s commitment to live out our love for God by loving and serving in Christ’s name.
CATHERINE ARMSTRONG, OUTREACH COUNCIL CHAIR
Habitat Houses built in Grier Heights that provided affordable housing for three families
Ministry Partners represented at the 2nd annual Outreach Partners’ Retreat featuring author Sara Miles
Patients seen by four MPPC doctors in three days at the Casa De Salud in Ahuachapán
Grier Heights residents are served at the Grier Heights Community Center each week
Donated to support hurricane relief, both globally and locally
4 Week series dedicated to Understanding Mental Illness PARISH NURSE
10 New backpacks of school supplies donated to pediatric patients at Charlotte Community Health Clinic for the 2017-2018 school year
Pastoral Care Looking into 2018, the key initiatives for the Deacons are to ensure roles are filled in meeting the needs of our members and visitors. We are accomplishing that through the following areas: •
Increased outreach to older members through meetings onsite and livestream at Southminster, and holding meetings six times per year between four different senior living centers.
Our thriving health ministry has been institutionalized through the efforts of the team and in conjunction with the Parish nurse. Services include flu shot clinics, blood drives, and other health initiatives.
The expansion of Prayer ministry into the Prayer and Worship ministry means Deacons are now more involved in ensuring that various worship needs and roles are filled from serving communion, to greeting and ushering.
The goal of expanding the Meal ministry into Hospitality ministry is to have Deacons more involved in the planning and execution of welcoming and directing new visitors, making frequent visitors feel more connected, encouraging members who are seeking to be more connected, and assisting with other special visitors (Room in the Inn, CROSS, visiting youth groups, etc.).
16 Caregiver support group meetings held PARISH NURSE
SCOTT CHAPPELL, BOARD OF DEACONS MODERATOR; DEBORAH CONNER, ASSOCIATE PASTOR FOR PASTORAL CARE
Nourishing meals prepared and delivered to MPPC members during a time of need
Flu vaccines provided to staff, church members and community
Parish Nurse Touches in 2017
Stewardship The Stewardship Council looks to three sources for funding: our annual campaign, the endowment, and major gifts. We are most grateful for church members who have made financial contributions this year. As of December 13, members have given $7,811,173 to the church, to support the general operating budget, as well as endowment and special projects. In March, we received PMA Consultingâ€™s report on developing a comprehensive and coordinated fund raising strategy and implementation plan. We successfully hosted our first ever Day of Giving on Sunday, May 7, during which members gave over $30,000 to the church on a single Sunday. As a part of the Annual Giving Campaign, which focused on generosity, the congregation read the book Enough, Discovering Joy Through Simplicity and Generosity, by Adam Hamilton. In our Annual Giving Campaign this year, we had fewer families pledging but higher average pledges. Our endowment increased, through contributions and investment returns, by $1,783,076, and now totals approximately $9M. We have added 24 households to our list of Legacy Partners (those who include the church in their estate plans), bringing our total number of Legacy Partners to 91 households. We are searching for a person to fill a newly created staff position, a Director of Development, Major Gifts & Planned Giving, and hope to have that position filled during the first quarter of 2018. During 2018, we will review the structure of the annual campaign, to address the decreasing numbers of households making pledges. We look forward to working with our new Director of Development, Major Gifts & Planned Giving, who will help us with major gifts, legacy gifts and the annual campaign. We will continue to identify additional Legacy Partners. We anticipate the beginnings of a comprehensive financial campaign, after receiving a strategic plan from the Discernment Team in the spring. JOE GRIER, STEWARDSHIP COUNCIL CHAIR
New Legacy Partners
Increase in endowment, through contributions and investment returns
Total Legacy Partners
Total dollars given to MPPC in 2017
Worship and Music In 2017, the Worship Council was guided by its strategic initiatives aimed at strengthening and engaging the congregation in an active and participatory worship experience. These initiatives include: •
Making planned concerted efforts to show hospitality in worship: We held a meeting with ushers for ideas and ways to enhance our hospitality not only to visitors but members as well. We are also reviewing our wedding policy as it relates to new members’ ability to fully participate. We made changes in communion procedures to better address needs of those with gluten allergies.
Utilizing technology to effectively facilitate worship beyond the walls of the church: We continue to see an increase in the number of worshipers engaged through our streaming 8:45 and 11 a.m. services. Southminster Retirement community has been a particularly successful example of communal worship beyond our walls.
Exploring and developing worship elements making creative use of our worship environment: Although this is an area we plan to explore further, we have at times used dramatic multiple readers for scripture, continued our Services of Wholeness, and enhanced the spiritual experiences of Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services. Our chancel choir has included a wide variety of music styles from gospel spirituals to classical sacred anthems with closer ties to the sermon topic.
Forging a strong connection between worship and local mission: Our local mission work is more frequently brought into worship through videos and stills presented in both Sanctuary and Celebrate services. Our “Dedicated Offering” lifts up outreach efforts as a direct response to God’s call.
Providing opportunities for cross-cultural worship experiences on a regular basis: Although our mission trips have provided opportunity for worship with global partners, we are looking for opportunities for shared worship experiences within our local community. We are seeking to identify and create more of these opportunities in the coming year. MARK de CASTRIQUE, WORSHIP COUNCIL CHAIR
Worship and Music Continued Looking Ahead to 2018 The Worship Council welcomes its upcoming participation in the work of the Discernment Team. We believe our strategic initiatives are well synchronized with their work and we will continue to develop actions that further long-range goals. We appreciate the input we have received from the Session regarding our efforts and we are excited that the Diaconate has sought ways to become more involved in worship participation during 2018, particularly in areas of ushering, greeting, and communion preparation.
MARK de CASTRIQUE, WORSHIP COUNCIL CHAIR
11 Mission Trips, Retreats and Conferences attended by youth YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES
67 New members joined with Confirmation
Youth and Their Families Youth and Their Families maintains its focus on providing each of its members with faith based opportunities that allow them to follow Christ as part of the MPPC community and beyond. Fully staffed, we will encourage our youth to TAKE NOTICE of others by offering kindness, practicing gratitude and offering themselves as a light among others. As we continue to center on this theme entering 2018, we will: •
Produce additional episodes to our podcast And Also With You. Addressing topics touching the everyday lives of our youth.
Continue to partner in fundraising and mission trips with the Charlotte Youth Ministry Consortium. This group is a vibrant youth ministry for smaller African-American churches in our community.
Adopt the CROSS program as the kick-off retreat for our Confirmation class after a successful outing this fall.
Educate our parents and community on currently critical issues such as suicide awareness, sexting and anxiety.
Create a training program for our youth as they currently serve and develop as the future leaders of our churches and communities.
Provide three international trips this year with one to El Salvador and two to Cuba.
YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES
83 Youth attended Great Wolf Lodge trip YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES
DEBORAH HULLINGER AND JACKSON SIPPE, YOUTH AND FAMILY MINISTRIES COUNCIL CHAIRS
Youth attended Montreat Youth Conference
Youth attended class dinners each month
Youth participated in weekly Gratitude Challenge
Cross Mission Weekend participants
YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES
YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES
YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES
YOUTH AND THEIR FAMILIES
2018 Approved Budget $5,950,000
CATEGORIZED BY FUNCTIONAL AREAS $ Administrative Services Communications Facilities Personnel Congregational Life
Children & Their Families
Youth & Their Families
Adult Faith Formation
Outreach Pastoral Care Stewardship Worship TOTAL EXPENSES
Financial statements are prepared by our professional staff, overseen by the treasurer, and routinely examined by the finance committee. Audited statements are available upon request. Detailed discussions may be scheduled by appointment. Contact Amy at email@example.com.
INCREASE FROM 2017 TO 2018
Average Attendance by Month 2500
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No ve m
us Au g
y ar ru Fe b
Does not include streaming data
Mission Statement Claimed by the Love of God in Jesus Christ, we are called into this community of faith living out our Love for God in worship, study, and service, loving and supporting one another as we join God’s transforming work in our city and in the world.
This mission statement was adopted by the Session on January 23, 2017. The language was developed through stories shared by leaders in the church about life changing experiences they had had through our church’s ministry. It builds on the work of the visioning team which conducted listening sessions designed to take the pulse of the congregation in preparation for calling a new Pastor. Our Reformed tradition is reflected in that we are claimed by God, called into community to live out love, and join God’s transforming work.