Re: Churches as Learning Org LO1426
Tue, 30 May 95 06:25:52 -0500

Replying to LO1386 --

Item Subject: Churches, Modelling and Shared Vision

I am surprised and overwhelmed at the response that I have received
from my introduction. Since I have responded separately to a few
notes I thought that I would pass along some background on the Church
I belong to and where exactly I am at with them. All of the people
who have responded have provided some outstanding ideas and
experiences for me to build on. For that I thank you all. I am now
in the process of drafting the first communique to the members of the
church and if anyone would like to provide third party feedback please
respond separately and I will forward the document. Thanks again.

Robert (Bob) Plautz Phone: (713) 272-1144
Amoco Corporation Fax: (713) 272-1020
USOG Exploration and Production Sector Pager: 1-800-759-4726
Director Vendor, Asset, Matl's and Services Mgt PIN 5217781#

______________________________ Forward Header __________________________________
Subject: Re: Churches, Modelling and Shared Vision
Author: Bob D. Plautz at hou4,bprvamsm
Date: 5/26/95 3:18 PM

Regarding churches and building shared vision let me give you a bit of
history first. This church is a Missouri Synod Lutheran Church that
started 50 years ago in what was then a small town. The town is now
part of the metropolitan area of Houston and is being swallowed up by
suburbia. Also, many in the church today work for some part of the Oil
and Gas industry and are always on the go. Consequently, the church
contains older "small town" people who like it that way and "on the go
growth" suburbia. The pastor, is conservative but is very open to the
idea fostering personal discovery in people as opposed to teaching.
Overall the frustration in the church is very high as to what are we
trying to accomplish or where are we going in the future. Money is not
an issue right now. Bottomline is that the Pastor and the church
council want to work on a vision.

I started the process with the Pastor I gave him some pre-reading
material consisting of the Fieldbook - Mental Models, Shared Vision,
and Personal Mastery, Creating Shared Vision by Marjorie Parker, The
Path of Least Resistance by Robert Fritz, and Ishmael by Daniel Quinn.
I then stepped through a Guided Imagery session with him to build his
vision. When I got the church council together, with the Pastor and
Asst. Pastor I elected, with the Pastor's consent to not share his
vision but to build a shared vision with them. I started with
explaining in summary the five disciplines, several hours of going
through Mental Models using exercises and a video clip, and then
explaining the difference between a vision statement and a vision.
The next day, I broke the team in two and had then write a news paper
article and develop a picture of what it would look like five years in
the future. Lastly we worked on what is current reality. The group
did develop a picture and all of the symbolism behind the picture.
This early draft of the picture is being drawn by a commercial artist
so that I can send a letter to all of the congregation describing the
vision and asking for help in expanding the picture. The very rough
plan is to send the letter as soon as possible to all member asking
them to discuss this as an agenda item when they meet, so that they
can provide feedback at the July members meeting. The September
meeting is scheduled to address issues and gap that members have
identified and revise the picture. The November meeting is to approve
the 1996 Budget and approve how this budget closes the gap between
current reality and the vision.

I hope this responds to your request. Have I missed anything and can
you give me any advise? I know the timeline is very very short! Talk
to you again. Bob

Robert (Bob) Plautz Phone: (713) 272-1144
Amoco Corporation Fax: (713) 272-1020
USOG Exploration and Production Sector Pager: 1-800-759-4726
Director Vendor, Asset, Matl's and Services Mgt PIN 5217781#

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Churches, Modelling and Shared Vision
Author: jwolfend ( at unix,in
Date: 5/26/95 1:49 AM

Hello Bob,

Interested in your comments on Supply Chain Management and Church Vision.

The SCM stuff sounds interesting from an environmental management
perspective, and appears to be similar to the "cradle to grave" concept of
product management. I am interested in how effective your efforts in this
area have been in terms of rationalising resource use, obsolence and
recycling type issues.

It is also interesting that Vice Presidents (and others presumably) are
reluctant to be too explicit regarding their vision for fear of "having
the picture get out". Is this in the sense of guarding competitive
advantage, or just a fear of being laughed at?

Aside from being an environmental policy researcher, my other hat has the
words "Church Deacon" written on it (figuratively, of course!). A part of
plan for church development has been to develop a common vission. So far,
we have a mission statement which covers the principles of proclaiming the
gospel, discipling the flock, and 'doing' meaningful worship. Even with
this, a difficult part seems to be getting the statement of common purpose
to be actualised in peoples' thinking and actions. I note that the
development of the mission statement was participative, with opportunity
given for all to comment and suggest changes.

I have thought of doing some Systems Dynamics modelling to help the
involved better understand the issues involved, but haven't got past the
'must do sometime' point with this yet.

I would be interested to hear about your experiences with building shared
vision in Church.


John Wolfenden, Centre for Agricultural & Resource Economics (CARE),
University of New England, ARMIDALE NSW 2351 AUSTRALIA;
Int'l code +61 67 / Aust'n code 067 - Phone: 733930; Fax: 733944;