Review Implementation Progress Update
Kia ora church whānau,
We have a lot to look forward to as we approach the Christmas season and remember the birth of our saviour. Before the close of the year, we wanted to take a moment to update you on the important movements happening with the implementation of the Review Advisory Committee (RAC) recommendations. The RAC provided its final report to the Board in April of this year, a summary of which can be found here. The Board and Arise staff have been making great progress in seeing these recommendations becoming embedded into our systems and culture. This has been an incredible undertaking, and we are grateful for all the time and prayer that has gone into this process.
Here is a summary of progress so far:
COMPLETED RAC RECOMMENDATIONS
- Organisational restructuring is well underway with the appointment of both our new Lead Pastor and our new General Manager.
- These two roles have no voting rights on the Arise Church board but attend all meetings and participate in discussions.
- Provision has been made to ensure all Arise Pastoral staff receive regular professional supervision/counselling.
- Communication continues across Arise to discuss and agree to roles and boundaries, and to ensure all pastoral roles (paid and voluntary) have clearly defined access to a spiritual carer to support them in their role.
- Clear financial policies have been put in place covering spending, honoraria, gifts, etc.
- Regular board reporting of financial performance is occurring.
- Quarterly financial updates are happening for church members.
- The Arise website sets out financial processes, accountability, and controls, for the wider community to access.
- Arise staff have worked hard to ensure that as an organisation we have a wide range of policies in place addressing human resources, health, safety and wellbeing, and providing guidelines for our church. Many of these policies are new or needed major updating and this has been a significant project that still continues.
- These policies have been used as the basis for our ‘employee handbook’ and ‘ministry school handbook’ and are also helping the formation of a ‘volunteer handbook’ (nearing completion).
- These policies have been developed and documented to specifically reflect our unique nature as an organisation.
- Arise has appointed privacy officers to ensure personal information collected is handled with good stewardship.
- Protection of existing information and databases held by Arise has been completed to ensure data is held in a safe manner.
- The Arise website sets out our current privacy policies for handling personal data and information.
Culture of Honour:
- Teaching/training processes are being put in place to ensure all Arise staff clearly understand and operate in a biblical reflection of honouring.
- The Arise website has an easily accessible method of feedback for those who have concerns about inappropriate honouring expectations.
- An example of necessary changes we have made: recognising that our previous practice of reserved front-row seating and moving people from certain areas created a perception that it was based on status, Arise has moved away from reserved seating, other than a limited number of seats required for good service dynamics.
RAC RECOMMENDATIONS IN PROGRESS & NEARING COMPLETION
Statement of Belief:
- Arise Church is in the process of reviewing and updating our ‘Statement of Belief’. This will be included within our Trust Deed, establishing our core Biblically-based beliefs.
- It will be used as our overarching tenet to guide all Arise board and leadership appointments.
- The new Statement of Belief will be finalised in the new year.
- A new Trust Deed has been drafted for Arise Church, reflecting current statutory requirements, RAC recommendations, and our new organisational structure.
- The Deed is currently under review by the Board to ensure it will accurately reflect our requirements.
- It is hoped to have the new Trust Deed in place early in the new year.
Spiritual Panel Policy:
- The new Arise Church structure will include a Spiritual Panel to provide support, prayer, and spiritual oversight and accountability for the Lead Pastor, Board and Leadership Team.
- The Spiritual Panel Policy is currently being developed, and we aim to have the policy finalised this year and a Spiritual Panel appointed early next year.
Local Campus Eldership:
- Each campus already has key leaders who support the Campus Pastor, the Board and the Leadership team. The Board desires to formalise and strengthen this.
- Working with the Lead Pastor and Campus Pastors, the forming of local eldership groups in each campus will begin in earnest next year.
The Board continue to be committed to seeing the RAC recommendations developed and implemented further, to bring meaningful change to Arise. The Board are currently working on a process to ensure the implementation of the RAC Recommendations are routinely reviewed. Our commitment is to ensure that implemented changes reflect the intent of the RAC recommendations and that they bring effective change to our church. We will provide another update in the first quarter of the new year.
We want to extend a huge thank you to the staff team who have done the bulk of this work behind the scenes, whilst continuing to serve in their usual responsibilities. And thank you church, for continuing to pray and trust God for His will to be done in and through Arise Church.
The Arise Board.