Este documento ha sido traducido al Español. Descarga el documento en forma PDF para leer el artículo completo, incluyendo información sobre el nuevo Distrito Regional Hispano.
The following is an update regarding Reimagine Foursquare, including board decisions and next steps, arranged according to the Five Stakes, which received overwhelming support at Foursquare Connection 2014 in Dallas this May. Also included with each Stake is a link to view a corresponding video presentation from Connection 2014.
Following the conclusion of Foursquare Connection 2014 in Dallas, a special representative group of key leaders, which included supervisors, board members, members of the Hispanic Council, pastors and central office staff, met in Tacoma, Wash., to make recommendations to the board of directors of the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel (ICFG) regarding implementation of the Five Stakes. The ICFG board convened in Los Angeles for its annual intensive June 24–26 to consider these recommendations.
The following is an update regarding Reimagine Foursquare, including board decisions and next steps, arranged according to the Five Stakes, which received overwhelming support at Connection 2014 in Dallas. Also included with each Stake is a link to view a corresponding video presentation from Connection 2014.
Stake 1: Align everything Foursquare to the Great Commission (our mission).
The commitment is to make sure everything (e.g., our structures, our systems, our resources, our polity, our events) aligns to the Great Commission. We were birthed from a local church that started a movement that went global. We must recover that singular focus to mobilize everything toward the harvest. Institutions drift over time. It’s the right season to integrate and synergize all of our efforts to finish the Great Commission of multiplying disciples, leaders, churches and movements.
The integration and coordination of Foursquare’s identity and mission continues to be implemented nationally and through districts. A strategic plan with specific mission objectives will be presented to the cabinet in March 2015.
Stake 2: Align the National Church Office and District Offices to a catalytic culture.
Denominations have three primary characteristics: cause, community and corporation. They all start out driven by a compelling cause. That creates community and leads to corporation. Over time, corporation and community will often trump cause with most resources and energy diverted to those things. It often takes a concerted intervention to reverse that and be led once again by cause. We want to streamline our corporation while empowering, resourcing and celebrating our cause. Community will always help us manage that tension.
Optimize districts for greater effectiveness by decreasing the total number of districts. This will strengthen districts with more resourcing for churches and bring greater financial strength to release more money to mission and less to operational costs.
The first step toward optimization will be to merge the Greater Los Angeles District with the Pacific Coast and Valleys District and Southwest District based on historical district lines effective Sept. 1, 2014. In addition, the Great Northern District will be merged with the Northwest District, and the Mid-Atlantic District will be merged with the Northeast District effective Jan. 1, 2015.
Credentialed ministers in the affected districts have already received more detailed communication about what this means for their churches, ministry assignments and districts. The National Church Office is working very closely with the seven mentioned districts to ensure smooth transition and an effective starting point for even greater fruitfulness.
During the past several years, the Hispanic Commission (formerly known as the Hispanic Council) has made significant progress with Foursquare’s presence and penetration with Hispanic ministry throughout the U.S. Under the leadership of the national Hispanic coach, and in close partnership with Hispanic representatives from each district, the momentum is exciting to witness.
A major next step in this progress is the formation of a Regional Hispanic District in the southwest region of the U.S. effective Jan. 1, 2015. It will consist of Hispanic churches currently located in the Central Pacific, Greater Los Angeles, Pacific Coast and Valleys and Southwest districts who will have the option to be part of the Hispanic district, or remain in their current district. Churches that meet at least two of the three following qualifiers will have the opportunity to join the newly created Regional Hispanic District: (1) the leader is Hispanic; (2) Spanish is the primary language of the church; and (3) most of those who attend are Hispanic.
This Hispanic district will reinforce the work of the national Hispanic Commission, and help to accelerate the work of the national Hispanic coach, including the important work of the existing Hispanic representatives in each district.
Stake 3: Align 100 percent of the tithe to the field (local and district).
We have been diligently working to reduce our central office expenses to release more resources to the field. We are now making a declaration with a plan, to be able to fulfill that commitment. Beginning in 2015, we are on a trajectory to contribute 70 percent of the extension tithe to our efforts in the field between the local church and our districts to finish the Great Commission, and developing a plan to eventually reach 100 percent return.
Effective Jan. 1, 2015, tithe income will be allocated as follows: districts (40 percent); local church (30 percent, which includes 10 percent for retirement); and central office (30 percent). A funding task force has been commissioned by the board to make recommendations for how to allocate the local church portion (approximately $6 million) to accelerate such things as church multiplication, church transformation and leadership development. The board will process the specific funding recommendations in October, and communication regarding these decisions will follow soon after.
Stake 4: Align Foursquare Foundation to resourcing and supporting the Foursquare mission.
The Foursquare Foundation board has been committed to help resource, align and integrate our global and national efforts to finish the Great Commission. It is committed to our efforts and to multiplying disciples, leaders, churches and movements. We will repurpose the process of resourcing our global family, the National Church, Foursquare Missions International, and the Risser Endowment Fund for Education. Instead of continuing the arduous process of grants, the Foundation will be a strategic catalyst for our Four-Stage Strategy and Reimagining efforts, and finishing the Great Commission.
In November 2014, the Foursquare Global Council, along with Foursquare area missionaries from around the world, will convene in Europe for a strategic gathering to determine how best to leverage a portion of the Foundation funds available to accelerate worldwide evangelism, strengthen member nations, provide leadership training and resources, open new nations by networking our resource member nations and reach new people groups.
Stake 5: Align polity to provide property options for local churches.
After significant research to keep our modified Episcopal governance while giving churches more options for property oversight, this direction recovers the beginning of our movement. We firmly believe that allowing churches more opportunities to be creative with their property assets and more entrepreneurial in securing leases and loans will result in a development of healthy leadership culture at the local church. Many churches are requesting more options, and this direction allows us to move from a parent model to more of a partner model, like we are doing globally.
The bylaw committee has been tasked to proceed with property and polity proposals, to be presented to the board in October 2014. All bylaw proposals will be available to credentialed ministers for review and discussion in early 2015. Any vote to add, delete or modify existing bylaws will take place at Connection 2015.
Further conversation, collaboration, deliberation and decisions are needed at every point to continue advancing the Five Stakes. Reimagine Foursquare is not a destination, but an ongoing journey of kingdom expansion and innovation.
The next major update on Reimagine will come in the fall, after the board convenes to make decisions regarding the specific next steps outlined in this update. Please continue to pray that God’s agenda will be advanced in the midst of our best-laid plans.
“Enlarge the place of your tent, and let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings; do not spare; lengthen your cords, and strengthen your stakes. For you shall expand to the right and to the left, and your descendants will inherit the nations, and make the desolate cities inhabited” (Isa. 54:2-3, NKJV).
To stay up to date on Reimagine Foursquare process, visit reimaginefoursquare.org.
Para leer este artículo en Español, por favor descarga el documento Los Próximos Pasos de Reimagina en forma PDF