Our system of governance at Village Church is vested in our members and rooted in the covenant we share with one another and with God. It is built on the belief that with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we can work together through discernment to find a faithful way forward.
Of course, this system depends on the service of many devoted members of our church. We believe that every one of us has something to offer to our community, and we seek together to find the ways in which God is calling each of us to serve. Each fall, the Board of Nominating works to help people discern the gifts they have to offer and the settings in which they might do so.
Village Church is led by the following people and groups, in trusting partnership and collaboration with our pastors:
Officers and Council
The highest elected lay officer of the church is the moderator, supported by the vice moderator and past moderator. The moderator presides at Church Council, which is charged with focusing on the long term, big-picture health of the church as well as the day-to-day work of the church. The Council has oversight of three primary groups that represent the different elements of our church life, as follows.
Five Deacon Ministries, consisting of approximately 60 church member Deacons, are aligned with our stated vision and are charged with carrying out the core ministries and essential work of the church:
Worship Ministry: Deacons of the Worship Ministry work with clergy to develop, create and provide for all aspects of the worship life of the church. This includes:
- Preparing and assisting in administration of the sacraments in Church Communion Services, and visiting and serving communion in church members' homes if requested.
- Assisting the clergy and preparing for baptisms • Preparing the Prayers of the People on the first Sunday of the month and for other worship services as requested.
- Overseeing the Ushers.
- Attending to the music personnel and matters pertaining to music for worship services.
- Embracing, discussing and assisting with Liturgical Arts throughout the church and church services.
- Recognizing and nurturing persons in discernment for ordained ministry.
- Assuring provisions for worship services in the absence of ordained staff.
(Combination of parts of prior Board of Deacons, the Board of Music and other groups)
Community Ministry: Deacons of the Community Ministry seek to nurture and deepen a sense of intergenerational community within the congregation in a variety of settings and aspects of church life, including but not limited to:
- Delivering flowers each Sunday morning after worship, responding to the joys and concerns of church members.
- Hosting yearly "Bonding in Community" events such as the Welcome Sunday Picnic, Thanksgiving Potluck Dinner, Fellowship Diners, Monthly Birthday Celebrations, and every other year, hosting the Sharing the Dream Service with our partners at Charles Street AME church.
- Developing a culture of friendly visits between our members, supported by training in listening skills and pastoral care.
(Combination of prior Board of Fellowship and parts of Board of Deacons)
Learning Ministry: Deacons of the Learning Ministry seek to equip the congregation to learn the Gospel and Christian Practices and create opportunities for children, youth, and adults to experience and grow in Christian community. They imagine, develop, and support the work of all the church's Christian Education programs. Deacons of the Children's, Youth and Adult Ed Ministries meet separately and focus on issues relevant to their curriculum.
- (prior Board of Christian Education)
Service Ministry: Deacons of the Service Ministry seek to support and maximize the ability of our congregation's members to act on their interest in service and to provide opportunities for adults and children to make a difference in the greater community. As such, we are guided by the following principles:
- Reach out to all God’s Kingdom without regard for ancestries, beliefs, histories or borders.
- Communicate service opportunities to the church community and recognize the achievements of volunteers and service organizations.
- Encourage intergenerational participation in service to bring about personal transformation.
- Give financial support to deserving organizations.
- Provide leadership in supporting service efforts within the church community.
(prior Board of Outreach)
Sharing Ministry: Deacons of the Sharing Ministry seek to enrich and expand membership by sharing with all people the spirit of our church and our own faith experiences, through personal connections, communications and creating a culture of invitation and welcome for all. The Sharing Ministry’s responsibilities include:
- Membership: maintaining our membership process of informational gatherings and new member joinings, considering what membership means in this day and age.
- Communication: providing direction for website and other media.
- Welcoming: ensuring that all are greeted before worship services, and that newcomers have a source of welcome and information at coffee hour.
(Combination of prior Board of Membership and Board of Communications)
The Administrative Boards, consisting of approximately 35 church members, manage the core operating functions of the church:
- Board of Finance
- Board of Human Resources
- Board of Properties
- Board of Nominating
Standing Committees carry out specific responsibilities related to the work of the Church.
- Churchyard Committee
- Development Committee
- Energy Task Force
- Financial Review Committee
- Gifts Committee
- Information Technology Committee
- Investment Committee
- Pastoral Residency Oversight Committee
- Pastoral Residency Sustainability Task Force
- Safe Church Committee
- Wider Church Delegates Committee
In addition, there are many independent lay-led Ministry Teams in which members work together to participate in and enrich many aspects of our church life. These groups are grassroots ministries developed by members with the purpose of serving others, engaging and inspiring our members, nurturing growth in faith, and enriching the life of our congregation.
In 2012, Village Church members voted to approve an updated set of bylaws that reflect our ministry-based structure. These changes will help us remain agile and responsive to the needs of our community and our world.