- There are legal issues. Two existing trusts and charities need uniting. This will be complicated and possibly time consuming. It may also be the least of my worries.
- There are relational issues. For starters my Dad is the pastor of The Grange and while he is a humble man, I'm still learning humility and both will be needed. My Grandma is a founder and active member of the church. In addition to that and more importantly the members of the churches need to get to know each other and build trust, friendship and community.
- There are financial issues. Resources will need re-considering, budgets will need re-writing, salaries and staffing will need reviewing. In addition to wise planning and sound stewardship we will need to resource a fresh plan for vision & growth.
- There are leadership issues. New leadership will need to be accepted, positions relinquished, new roles taken up. In every area we will need people to value mission more than position and the think first of the church as a whole rather than me in my role. Leaders (and I'm talking about myself here) will need new degrees of leadership skills and abilities to see this tough challenge through.
- There are style issues. The two churches have very different demographics, very different cultures and very different worship styles. From this diversity, unity needs to emerge that is neither a compromise that satisfies no-one nor a take-over that leaves some wounded and bruised, but a fresh discovery of the call of God on a new people.
- There are generational issues. The old will need to accept the young and the young accept and honour the old.
- There are theological issues. There always are. In the fundamentals, I already know we have broad agreement but it's unlikely to be those things we trip over instead it will be whether we can agree to disagree on the same things or whether we discover theological fault lines that we just can't cross.
- There are evangelistic issues. This could be very time consuming, can we keep on reaching out while we manage this process.
- There are practical issues. Where will we meet? When will we meet? How will we meet?
- There are spiritual issues. We need to continue to hear God, to know His will and to be honouring in our decisions and our methods.
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