The DHF of NC Leadership Council met in regular session on Saturday, Jan. 9, 2016 at FCC Richlands with all members of the council present. Rev. Dr. Gary Edens opened the meeting with a devotion from 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV); “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” His emphasis was on the word “new.” Traditions have their place, but we should always focus on the new things that God is doing and keep moving our congregations forward in the will of God.
Since we had not met since Oct. Lynn highlighted the significant items from the past two meetings.
1. The first item of business was to consider an honorarium for Rev. Michael Ten Eyck for his excellent and committed service at our first two gatherings. We paid for his airline tickets, but the Council felt like he should be compensated for his services.
2. The group spent time reviewing/assessing the pros/cons of our previous DHF of NC Gathering held on Nov. 7, 2015 at FCC Richlands. Rev. Jack Mumford noted that the attendance was not as high as the first event. The group felt it was because it fell right at the beginning of the holiday season when people were gearing up for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Everyone thought the way we joined together to provide for the meal worked out real well. Rev. Lynn Maxwell noted that the registration process went very well and thanked Tuckahoe for managing this process. Jack also mentioned that there didn’t seem to be enough time between lunch and the afternoon session for viewing exhibits and fellowship with one another. We will plan on allowing more time for this at our next gathering. Everyone felt it would go over better if we had just one large gathering a year well before the holidays and focused on smaller events/workshops at other times during the year.
3. The Council set September 17, 2016 as the target date for our next gathering. The event is tentatively set to be held at Unity CC pending approval of their church board.
The Council also discussed holding a workshop with seminars on issues relevant to our churches. We came up with three topics for consideration: 1. A workshop on prayer by Rev. Jack Mumford. 2. A workshop on Social Media for churches (presenter to be determined). 3. Sunday School ???. Many churches are struggling with declining numbers in Sunday school and thought it would be good to explore alternative approaches in order to ensure the church is teaching the Scriptures to its members. The group recommended contacting Rev. Ryan Vernon from the 902 Church to see if he could assist us with the Sunday school workshop. Lynn will contact Ryan Vernon about this.
The basic format for the workshop will be: 1. Opening with short message and music. 2. Three workshops held simultaneously (churches should have enough people in attendance to cover specific workshops of interest). 3. Lunch followed by dismissal. The entire function should be completed in one morning session. The first workshop will be held on Sat., May 14, 2016 at Pleasant Hill CC pending board approval.
4. It was noted that we had contacts from two churches as a result of the advertisement placed in the Sun Journal and two papers in Pamlico County. Since we are identified as DHF of “NC,” we believe we should pursue advertising our fellowship throughout the state. Recommendations for consideration are; The News & Observer, Charlotte Observer, Jacksonville Daily News, and Kinston Free Press. Betty will provide Lynn with the ad she developed and he will distribute it to Council members to see if there are any recommendations for changes to the ad before taking action.
Jack suggested that we contact Rick Vernon to see if his TV morning show, Carolina In The Morning, might be interested in a hosting a short interview about our fellowship. Lynn will contact Rick to see if this is feasible.
We also felt it is time for our fellowship to establish a DHF of NC Facebook page. Kim Holley will take the lead on this.
5. We briefly mentioned the ministerial application/support process. Lynn has the action on developing this document. Lynn is asking for all our churches who have any ministers or Lay persons who would be available for churches to call on when needed to provide him their names. Lynn will establish a database to keep track of the names.
Betty noted that Unity CC is currently without a minister since the beginning of January. She is serving as the interim until they are able to secure another minister.
6. We discussed the desire to develop a youth centered event during the year. Unity CC has a nice gym and facilities to host such an event. Everyone was asked to think about it and offer thoughts/suggestions at our next meeting.
7. One of the churches that responded to our advertising was Broad Creek CC in Pamlico County. One of their Elders contacted Gary and he and his wife attended our gathering. They also came back to one of Richlands’ Sunday services and suggested that their Elders and Richland’s Elders get together after the first of the year. Gary will follow up on this.
8. Rev. Kim Holley will make contacts with Mount Olive University and Campbell University to see about establishing some kind of relationship with them, especially in the area of ministerial support.
9. Gary and Kim noted that they have used Pro-Image and The Sign Barn for making shirts. The Sign Barn has also made signs and decals for various church functions. Pro-Image does embroidery type images whereas The Sign Barn uses some type of stenciling process. They can also make car decals. Lynn will contact The Sign Barn for more information.
10. It was agreed that we would take one session and devote it primarily to developing our Theological concepts/beliefs.
11. Gary notified the Council that he would be retiring from full-time ministry on April 24, 2016. But, he would like to continue working with the Council until the completion of his term which is for two years. He and Jacky will be moving to Virginia upon retirement. Gary is willing to drive down for our meetings and special events.
12. Our next Council meeting will be held on March 12, 2016 at FCC Richlands at 10:00 a.m. The topics for our next meeting will be: Theological concept, May Workshop, and discussion of youth event.