Child Development Center Closed - Friday, January 21

Due to forecasted inclement weather, the Saxe Gotha Child Development Center is Closed on Friday, January 21.

Our guiding statement during this transition is HOPE: hope for ourselves, hope for Saxe Gotha and hope for our wider community. We ask you to join us, your leadership in seeking to embody the values of HOPE: 

Honor God 
Openly Communicate
Pray Fervently
Extend Grace

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Transition Team / Pastor Nominating Committee Update:

The Transition Team and Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC) have been prayerfully working to discern God’s will for our congregation as we transition to a new Senior Pastor. We met together with ECO representatives to discuss Presbytery recommendations regarding a Certified Transitional Pastor (CTP). The result of this meeting was a unanimous agreement that an ECO Certified Transitional Pastor will best serve our church in providing discipleship and discernment as we eventually transition to the new Senior Pastor that God has already chosen for us to call to lead our congregation. At their November meeting, Session approved a motion brought forward from the Transition Team that Session hire a Certified Transitional Pastor to start no later than July 18, 2022, with a contract term of at least one year. This corresponds with Senior Pastor Jim Glatz's proposed departure from Saxe Gotha on July 17, 2022, which was recently approved by the Personnel Team. Session also voted to form a 5-member Search Team to evaluate interested candidates from the pool of ECO Certified Transitional Pastors and to identify and recommend the Pastor who will best lead us during this transition.

ECO trains and certifies Pastors who are called as Certified Transitional Pastors to help churches like Saxe Gotha navigate through a pastoral transition so that the church is healthy and ready for its flourishing next step. While shepherding and ministering to the congregation at Saxe Gotha, the Certified Transitional Pastor hired by Session will prayerfully and faithfully assist our members and staff with working through the loss of our Senior Pastor, and with church visioning and planning for the future. These important and primary actions will best prepare the PNC, already elected by the Congregation, with its work in identifying the Senior Pastor that God has already chosen for our church. The Certified Transitional Pastor who serves Saxe Gotha will not be a candidate to apply for our Senior Pastor position.

The Session, Transition Team and Pastor Nominating Committee deeply appreciate the continued prayers and support of our staff and covenant partners as we continue to serve Saxe Gotha during this important transition.

Thanks for your help,
Scott Taylor
Transition Team Member

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Transition Update - October 21, 2021

Transition Team Update:

The Transition Team (Scott Taylor, Matt Gissendanner, Michelle Faust, Blake Taylor and Nancy Lundy) has been hard at work getting an initial transition plan written, organized and approved by Session. We have worked alongside the church consultant from Crows Feet, the Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC), the ECO Presbytery of South Carolina Ministry Partnership Team (MPT) representative and the Session to create a plan utilizing the data from the recent church survey to bring Saxe Gotha toward her new future. Please rest assured that we are working diligently to make sure we have a smooth transition for everyone, including the new pastor God has chosen for us. We look forward to providing you with monthly updates in the church newsletter. 

Pastor Nominating Committee Update:

The Pastor Nominating Committee has hit the ground running, and we are excited to find the minister that God has prepared for us. We are prayerfully and deliberately working our way through the steps followed when searching for a new minister. With the assistance of ECO, SGPC Leadership and Crows Feet Consulting, we are gathering information that will enable us to post the Senior Minister application.  

The creation of the application has several components other than the job description, we are also working on a description of our church and community. We all know that Saxe Gotha is a nurturing, loving faith family, and we want to ensure that this is communicated. In addition to describing our church, we also want to explain what a great community we live in.  

The PNC is composed of individuals with diverse backgrounds and skills and we are committed to seeking God’s will for Saxe Gotha through prayer, work and discernment. We are excited about our next chapter and ask that you join with us in prayer for our congregation, current leadership and new minister. We are certain that God has a plan for our church family.  

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CAT Survey for Members - Congregational Assessment Tool Findings (August 2021)

Dear Church Family,

In July, Saxe Gotha’s Officers and Staff gathered to discuss the Church Assessment Tool (CAT) survey data. Several wonderful things about our congregation were confirmed. First, we heard that over 385 members dedicated the time necessary to take the 100-question survey, which is proof of your devotion to Saxe Gotha’s future. Thank you! Also, even in the face of constant cultural bombardment, Saxe Gotha’s members voiced resoundingly that we remain grounded in eternal truths as revealed in the Bible. Saxe Gotha is overwhelmingly, uniformly theologically conservative and our members “believe that their faith is central to their lives rather than peripheral.”

The CAT survey data also showed that three priorities of actionable goals were consistently ranked highest among all demographics:

1) Develop and implement a comprehensive strategy to reach new people and incorporate them  into the life of the church.  

2) Make necessary changes to attract families with children and youth to our church.

3) Expand outreach ministries that provide direct services to those living on the margins of society. 

We also heard these additional findings of interest:

- “Members of the church like to find familiar ways of doing things and stick with them . . . the church may find it difficult to make the changes required to achieve its goals without triggering conflicts." – Crows Feet Consulting

- Of those surveyed, 81% tended to agree or agree with the statement “On the whole, I am satisfied with how things are in our church.”  

- The data demonstrated an environment of high satisfaction and low energy. This can allow the congregation to feel relatively satisfied with the status quo.  

- “On the whole, members of the church have a deep appreciation for the life they share as a congregation.” – Crows Feet Consulting

The officers and staff have been prayerfully considering the results of the survey and we will continue over the coming months to develop meaningful and actionable goals. We are encouraged that even during this time of change you, our members, have demonstrated a deep loyalty to our church family. 

Our guiding statement during this transition is HOPE: hope for ourselves, hope for Saxe Gotha and hope for our wider community. We ask you to join us, your leadership in seeking to embody the values of HOPE

Honor God 

Openly Communicate

Pray Fervently

Extend Grace

Saxe Gotha’s officers and staff will be gathering again with the consultant this Saturday to continue to discern God’s Will. Please pray for our church and for its leaders, that we would be sensitive to the wisdom and guidance of the Holy Spirit as we seek to serve His church. We are ever hopeful and encouraged, knowing we can trust that God is constantly working for the good of His church, and that God is always in control, working “all things according to the counsel of His will.” (Ephesians 1:11) 

On behalf of the Officers and Staff,

Byron Kirby

Elder, Class of 2022

* Please note that a copy of the Crows Feet assessment is available in the church office for your review. And, feel free reach out to me if you would like to discuss.

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