The Elders have had productive meetings on April 17, May 15, and June 19. In addition to their normal practices of prayer and time in the Word, they focused on the following:
The Elders are responsible for initiating and maintaining policies that govern the activities of Harvest Bible Chapel, as well as ensuring staff accountability and conformity to established policy. In spring 2018 meetings, the Elders have reviewed updated policies surrounding, the 10 Moral Fences (practices our pastors follow to avoid any appearance of impropriety or falling into moral sin), document retention, Whistleblower, and Finance Policies. A positive report on an audit of church security procedures was also discussed at length.
During these months, the staff Executive Leadership Team went with representatives from the Elder Board to each campus for a ‘family meeting.’ Attendance at these meetings was strong, with several thousand in attendance in total. The content presented included:
- Lead Pastors – as a step towards next generation leadership, five men (Pastors Trei Tatum, Jeff Donaldson, Mohan Zachariah, and Landon and Luke MacDonald) have been given the title ‘Lead Pastor.’ These men have all been on staff a decade or more and many have observed their unique capacity to help as Harvest strives to be strong for the gospel for many years to come. Their responsibilities will be expanding, as will their opportunities for preaching and leadership church-wide.
- Fall Funding Campaign – For the fifth time in our history, we are preparing to ask our church to give over and above regular giving to take new ground together. Plans are underway for a fall launch and dozens of volunteers are already hard at work. The overall vision for the campaign is next generation; half the giving going toward mortgage reduction and half going toward big projects. Big projects being prayed through include (1) an addiction recovery center at Camp Harvest, (2) two new campuses in 2019, (3) a worship center type building at Camp Harvest, and (4) a substantial building project at each of our current seven campuses. There will be much time given to information and questions in the months to come.
- Financial Update – At each meeting, an up-to-date financial report was given. The campus where the meeting took place saw its financial contributions in context to the whole. Overall as a church, through June 15, we are about 2% behind our projected giving for the year. That’s well within our normal range and we rejoice at the faithfulness of God and the generosity of His church.
HCA / Harvest Elgin
In the June Elder Meeting, the initial findings of the Harvest Christian Academy/Harvest Elgin report were presented. Adjusting policy to allow both the school and church to be better partners to each other is the goal. The initial recommendations presented were well received and are being finalized for implementation this fall. This will likely include changes in weekend service times and school activity schedules.
Pastor Kurt Gebhards
As part of the Rolling Meadows family meeting on May 2, it was announced that Pastor Kurt is in the process of finding a new ministry assignment. Pastor Kurt spoke at length of his appreciation for our church and the blessing that Pastor James and Pastor Rick have been to his family. His desire to preach weekly and lead his own congregation has been known to our elders since he arrived and we affirm his gifts/calling to this kind of role. Landon and Luke MacDonald have agreed to jointly take on the Campus Pastor role in Rolling Meadows alongside their other responsibilities. The Gebhards family has served well the last two years and Kurt will continue on staff and in our church until his next opportunity arrives.
Pastor James Summer Break
As we approach our 30th Anniversary in September, Pastor James is beginning his annual study break. As part of his commitment to spending his life building a single church, the elders have long seen the benefit of a 6-week study break in the summertime to refresh and prepare for another year. In recent years, our other pastors have done a great job filling these weeks and will do so between now and the Summer Revival nights starting July 28. Please be in prayer for Pastor James and Kathy this summer, particularly this weekend, June 23-24, as they minister with Pastor Al and Debbie Blake at Harvest Bible Chapel St. Vincent.
The Elders of Harvest Bible Chapel