The Transition Team has faithfully been working to complete the task given by the 2011 Annual Conference to bring change to the structure and model for ministry. As a result of the efforts of the team and with consultation with the Cabinet, we are pleased to share that the following pieces of the transition plan are now in place:
- The role of the district superintendent will change to one of coaching, mentoring, teaching, team-building, and vision-casting. In each district there will be one district superintendent and one Assistant to the Superintendent, whose primary role will be to handle, under the direction of the superintendent, all administrative, disciplinary functions of the superintendent. A job description for the Assistant to the DS will be posted in mid-March listing these duties with more specificity.
- The administrative work of the district will be centralized and supported through a district administration support team that will be housed in the United Methodist Building in Garner. This team will consist of a receptionist, an administrative coordinator and a district systems administrator. All accounting functions of the districts will be performed by the current Treasurer’s Office staff, as is currently done for two districts. Job descriptions for the district support team will be posted in mid-March to begin receiving resumes.
- With the centralization of district administration, district physical offices will be closed. The goal is for district superintendents to be more in and with churches rather than in an office communicating to churches. Superintendents will work remotely through technology already available such as internet conference and video calling. An internet-based phone system will be used to allow for seamless interface between a centralized receptionist and all district personnel.
- Housing will be provided to district superintendents in the form of a housing allowance instead of through a district parsonage. Current district parsonages will be sold and sale proceeds will the invested. Earnings from the proceeds of those sales will be used to fund the housing allowances as much as possible to reduce the amount of funding apportioned through district administration for the housing costs.
- Funding for the work of the district offices will be provided through the conference budget that will be proposed to annual conference each year. All district offices will receive equal funding for programming in the district. Funding will be apportioned based on the same formula currently used for conference apportionments. There will no longer be a separate district work fund from the district office after 2012. Any savings from this approach will be reflected in the combined totals from the district work fund and lines already in the conference budget for district items such as salary/benefits and travel.
- With the reduction in work load for the District Board of Trustees due to reduced property matters, the work of the District Board of Trustees and the Committee on Superintendency will be assigned to the same persons. This means that the same people will serve as Trustees as well as the Committee on Superintendency (with the addition of two at-large persons on the Committee on Superintendency as required by the Book of Discipline). In the nominations process for these committees, all disciplinary requirements will be followed as the nominations are made for these board and committee rolls.
The Transition Team has a timeline for the completion of the work and will use this timeline as a guide to complete the remaining work by the 2012 Annual Conference. We are looking forward to sharing the final plans and celebrating a new and exciting way to live into our mission as the Church of Jesus Christ… “to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the Transformation of the World.”
Rev. Linda Taylor, Chairperson, Conference Transition Team