Session Notes – SEPT 2019
Full agenda after our summer break, but good to be back. We began early with a dinner hosted by Eleanor in honour of Victor’s birthday. We were well fortified for the night’s work, thanks Eleanor! This meeting was Young Tae’s first; he will be attending Session regularly going forward in his role as Assistant Minister.
We also welcomed Samuel for a portion of the meeting. Sam has discerned a call to ministry in the Presbyterian Church in Canada, and so will be pursuing an MDiv at VST following completion this spring of his MATS degree (Master of Arts, Theological Studies). As he is a member of RPC, the next step on his journey is for our Session to recommend him to Presbytery, who have the final say on students heading for divinity studies. We are delighted to think that Sam’s energy and good spirits will be incorporated into the leadership of our denomination.
In a decision which will become readily apparent to you very soon, we decided it was no longer a good use of resources to produce 150 bulletins or more every Sunday. We are now used to following the service from the video screen, and a lot of hours, paper, and toner will be conserved. In its place, a small sheet of announcements (like our current inserts) will be prepared and distributed. As well, Pearl will email a PDF of the bulletin to you every Friday, so you can bring it on your smartphone if you want. We will continue to print a small number for those who cannot see the screens; if you need one, please ask a greeter.
We had to cancel our annual May leadership retreat this year due to Victor’s sick leave. Session is feeling the loss of this opportunity to review our identity, vision, and goals. Consequently, over the next few months, we will be intentionally considering the ministry, programs, and organisation of RPC from a perspective of assessing where we are 3 ½ years into our 5-year plan. Some steps already or soon-to-be taken to refresh our ministry include:
- calling Young Tae Choi to be our Assistant Minister (half-time) for two years
- creating a job description for the staff position of Children and Youth Director
- planning midweek events, such as a Wednesday night ‘Pit Stop’ (first one, November 13) for spiritual and bodily refreshment
- holding a biweekly elders’ book study on ‘Future Faith’ (starting October 4) – we have had our outlook shaped by the mold of declining Western mainline churches – this book considers the growth of global Christianity and the new directions it is taking – Vancouver has become a global city
So, some renewal and changes ahead, but we reconfirm being rooted in our motto, ‘Deep with God, Wide with the World’ and being open to the leading of the Spirit. The challenge is to know what should not change and keeping it, while seeing what does need change and doing it.
Please continue to pray for the Session and your elders and to welcome them as they seek to engage in relationships with you throughout the year.
Graeme, Clerk of Session