Scott Hodge



May 18, 2005

Several weeks ago I met with a pastor who is in the very beginning stages of church transition/turnaround.  We had a great discussion and one of the questions he asked me was, "What is the most important thing to know when it comes to turning a church a new direction?"

Great question!  My answer?

A clear mission.

I shared with him our experience and how every weekend at The Orchard we make it a part of our welcome to remind people of why we exist.  We say it the same way every weekend, "Welcome to The Orchard!  Our mission is to lead people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ."  And then we almost always follow it up with a one or two line sentence as to how the goal of our worship gatherings are that every person, regardless of where they are at, take a step forward on their spiritual journey.

Does it sound repetitive week after week?  Yes.  Do people ever get tired of hearing it?  Maybe so.  Do I ever get tired of saying it?  Not really.  But even if I did, it wouldn’t matter!  Because I guarantee you that if you were to ask any member or regular attendee of our church to recite to you our mission – probably 70-80% of them would be able to tell you word for word why we exist.

Of course, that statement has to have the "goods" to back it up.  Otherwise it’s just a nice sounding set of words that really contain no substance.  And for us, one of the ways we talk about the "goods" is via storytelling – letting people tell their stories of how their lives have been impacted since becoming a part of our church community.

There is no doubt that having a clear cut mission statement is powerful.  It is something that you always have to fall back on.  It is something that will help you say "yes" to the right things and "no" to the wrong things. (And doesn’t it seem like there are more "no’s" than "yes’" sometimes?)

What is your organization’s mission statement?  If you’re a business, do your employees know why you exist?  Better yet, do your customers know why?  How about the church leaders reading this – do your people know your mission?  Do you?

Recommended Resource:

The Path : Creating Your Mission Statement for Work and for Life

by Laurie Beth Jones

2 Responses to “Mission”

  1. kaleobill says:

    great post scott. love the idea of reminding people of our mission each week during the welcoe – there’s really no better time to do it! kaleo exists to unite people with God and each other. we say it all the time, but still not nearly enough. we all need to hear that: when you’re so sick of saying it and think you’ve said it a million times and you don’t think you can say it again – say it again.

  2. David Wegley says:

    That is a great book. I highly recommend it!

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