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Pardeeville, Wisconsin

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Congregational Visioning Session, 11/21/21 

        After worship on November 21st, we remained in the sanctuary to have a conversation about the life of our church. The uniqueness of our circumstances began when we could not find a pastor. We’re a long way from anywhere really big, and a pastor is unlikely to come to our community for a half time position. Your Session then got creative and developed our current model: invite pastors to come for a healthy length of time to do nothing but lead worship. The results have been very satisfying. But just as all that was going so well, we were hit with Covid, as was every other church in the world. And once again, we adapted to the new reality. We zoomed! And by all accounts, we navigated that space better than most churches.

        We are back in the building, but still zooming. This felt like a moment to take a deep breath and see where all these changes have left us. So we wrestled with a few questions, as we tried to see into the future.

Question one: What delights you about this church?

        You painted a lovely picture of this congregation. Small, but not held back by our size. A close, loving communion of friends that rely on each other. A place of spiritually rich worship. A community that cares about the larger community and has a strong sense of mission beyond our bounds. A beautiful, historic old building with a unique history of faithful witness. An open minded and accepting fellowship that welcomes all.

Question two: What concerns you about our congregation?

        We are aging! We are not seeing new members come through our doors. We have very few children and young people. We seem to lean on the same people for leadership year after year. Even though we have made quantum leaps in technology, we have a ways to go. We seldom see about half of our members.

Question three: What then shall we do?

        It was suggested that we let the world know that we are an inclusive congregation, perhaps by flying a rainbow flag. We ought to continue to offer virtual worship through Zoom. Our building could be used for more community activities. We who are in the building regularly could be making personal contact with we who are seldom seen. We might consider sharing a pastor with another church. And perhaps such a pastor would be a good recruiter. We could drop our denominational name and become a community church. We could try harder to broaden the base of leadership.

        Two extremes were also voiced. One was dire: we may, at some point, have to make the tough decision to close our doors. But the other extreme was heard with some determination. It was the conviction that we will survive!

        Your Session will take this feedback and prayerfully consider what they have heard. They also seek your thoughts in the future. They do not “run this church” alone, or in a vacuum! They represent all of us, as we continue to live faithfully as the body of Christ. Thanks to all who took part.

Contact Information  
First Presbyterian Church of Pardeeville
105 South Main St.
Mail: P.O. Box 660
Pardeeville, Wisconsin 53954
Phone 608-429-2646
Regular Schedule  

Office Hours

  • Regular office hours are Fridays from 10:00-noon.  

Announcements

Help Wanted!

We have new wireless microphones! The next step is to have folks to carry them around to those who would like to make announcements and/or express joys and concerns. This will allow both our worship leaders and our members to hear what others are sharing.  A possible draw -- you don't have to say anything, unless you so desire!  Thank you in advance for volunteering.  The sign-up sheet is on the office window.

Looking for liturgists!

We will now be using a sign-up method.  The sheet is on the office window.  Please go ahead and sign up for the dates you would like to serve as liturgist.  Be brave!  It's easier than you might think.

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