By Craig Carr

When considering the effectiveness of a pastor’s role in a church, a list of job duties and essential skills is just the beginning. Given the vast array of ministry tasks and responsibilities, for a pastor to know where to prioritize his or her time and energy can often be overwhelming.

In the spring of 2015, a special committee of pastors was assembled to bring a bit more focus and clarity to the pastor’s role. This committee met monthly until they reached a consensus on identifying, prioritizing, and simplifying the role of pastor. Out of this process came a set of shared core values for ministry, which were introduced in the fall of 2015. These values are summarized in the five-word acronym that is the foundation for the ministerial core values of Friendship, Adaptability, Integrity, Teamwork, and Humility.

F-A-I-T-H represents the common ground on which pastors collectively stand in every part of the Rocky Mountain Conference. These values have the potential to bring greater clarity, consistency, and common under- standing to the role of ministry among pastors in the Rocky Mountain Conference. They are meant to benefit pastors both in their personal lives as well as in the focus of their ministry; a two-fold aspiration of “Living and Leading by F-A-I-T-H.”

Recently, during the winter retreat held at Glacier View Ranch, January 9-11, 2016, pastors had a chance to further explore the committee’s vision and intent of F-A-I-T-H. Here is a brief synopsis of that discussion as further application is made for how pastors can best exercise F-A-I-T-H in their lives and ministries.

The value of Friendship is measured in time, communication, and connection. It’s about loving God and others through genuine, personal contact through meaningful relationships.

The value of Adaptability is about being accepting,  open, flexible, and sacrificial. It’s about maintaining a curiosity and a wider view of things with a willingness to try new things.

The value of Integrity is modeled through honesty, transparency, consistency, and character. It is the foundation of personal influence and leadership credibility, to be guarded through constant connection with Jesus Christ.

The value of Teamwork can also be described by words like unity, synergy, cooperation, togetherness, unselfishness, and helpfulness. Teamwork is essential to ministry and is grown through building relationships of affirmation and accountability.

The value of Humility helps one maintain a teachable spirit that finds its greatest strength and truest identity rooted in Jesus Christ. A humble spirit is quick to apologize, confess, and show courage under fire; a heart ready to praise God for successes and embrace challenges as  growth opportunities.

When requested and in coordination with the local pastor, the RMC ministerial department is available to facilitate leadership training focused on F-A-I-T-H.

Craig Carr is RMC ministerial director.