Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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“Something Exciting for Sunday Nights”
by Tom Goodman
May 25, 2005

I hope you will come to our special called business meeting and support an important proposal.  In the last Quarterly Business Meeting, the congregation passed a motion from one of our members asking the staff to address the problems in our Sunday night schedule.

The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 5.  The proposal we want you to approve involves a change in our Sunday night adult activities.  In short, we want to launch a “Hillcrest Institute” and make it the only churchwide adult activity for Sunday evenings.

Here are my answers to some questions you may have over the proposal:

How is this proposal different from last year’s proposed schedule change?  Last year we attempted to streamline our entire weekly calendar for all ages.  I asked for eighty percent to approve this change, so when we received 79.4 percent “yes” ballots, we did not make the change.  This year, we’re simply focusing on what the adults do on Sunday evenings.  What we’re proposing for the adults on Sunday evenings, however, hasn’t changed from last year’s proposal.
What is the Hillcrest Institute?  It’s an exciting collection of classes to help adults grow spiritually.  In next week’s Winning Ways I’ll explain the features that make the Hillcrest Institute such a great idea.
In last year’s proposal, a provision was made for adults who wanted a lay-led service during the Hillcrest Institute.  Is that still an option?  Yes.  However, just like last year, members who have a heart for this option will need to step up and provide the leadership.  Staff will be teaching in the Institute classes.
Why can’t we do the Institute and an evening service?  Two reasons.  First, few people will attend both.  Take a look at our current schedule of Discipleship Training and Evening Worship, and you’ll find that few people stay for both.  Second, a lot of our people are in leadership, and we need protected times for them to meet.  Currently, there is no dedicated time slot for leadership meetings.  In fact, some of the leadership meetings currently take place during Discipleship Training and some take place during evening worship.  If the proposal passes, we can then schedule leadership meetings at a dedicated time slot.
What will happen to programming for children and youth?  This proposal only addresses adult programming for Sunday evenings.  Leaders in children and youth activities may make changes to their schedules as they see fit.
When will we do special programs that are currently offered on Sunday nights?  Choir concerts, awards services, and churchwide fellowships are sometimes offered on Sunday night.  We can still schedule these for Sunday evenings, but we may schedule some of them on Wednesday evenings during the midweek service.
Be praying about your staff’s proposal.  Last year, I asked for a vote of eighty percent and we missed that mark by just two votes.  I had a lot of folks write me and say, “Oh, I’m so sorry that my wife and I weren’t there!  We were the two votes you needed!”  I’m going to ask for eighty percent again, so be sure to come out!


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