The PCC, or Presbytery Coordinating Commission is the elected commission responsible for coordinating the mission and programming of the Presbytery as well as for leading short-range and long-range strategic planning. The Manual of Operations states that the PCC “shall lead the Presbytery to examine its mission goals and strategies to help the body discern and implement appropriate changes within the context of covenant community.”
What makes the PCC distinct?
In contrast to other structures that the Presbytery has employed in the past, the PCC does not make decisions as or for the Presbytery, but rather brings all recommend-dations and motions to the full governing body at stated or called Presbytery meetings for consideration, so the governing body can make the decisions and commissioners can then report these decisions to their home churches. The PCC membership is comprised of elected moderators and members of Presbytery committees and commissions. This structure is intentional, so that the work of these groups may be directly shared and coordinated.
Who serves on the PCC?
The PCC membership consists of the four elected Presbytery officers—Moderator, Vice-Moderator, Stated Clerk, and Treasurer—along with the moderator and one additional member from each permanent committee or commission of the Presbytery. If the moderator is a Teaching Elder, then the other member from that committee or commission must be a Ruling Elder, and vice versa. This plan aims to assure equal representation. This membership configuration also provides the opportunity for committees and commissions to share and coordinate their activities effectively.
The Presbytery Moderator also moderates the PCC during her or his term of office, and then serves an additional year on the PCC as Immediate Past Moderator in order to provide continuity from year to year. The Stated Clerk serves as PCC secretary.
How often does the PCC meet?
While the Manual of Operation requires the PCC to meet at least three times a year, the current PCC has opted to meet monthly in order to effectively meet its responsibility to engage in strategic planning. The meeting day is the third or fourth Thursday at 10 am.
In what specific work is the PCC engaged?
From its beginning, the PCC engaged the major questions that guided the work of ACOG—the Administrative Commission on Governance—the group that led the Presbytery through the initial transitional stages and then dissolved when the Presbytery approved more permanent structures. These questions are
- God is calling us to serve in this place as a covenant community of servant leaders. What possibilities for mission and ministry emerge as we think about this specific calling?
- How can we shift our primary collective energy from governance to mission, structuring our lives to be open, accountable stewards of all the resources that God provides?
- How can we value the gifts of covenant community to provide mutual nurture and support?
- How can we find ways to provide greater, more authentic access for younger members who are our emergent leaders?
At the January 2014 stated meeting, the PCC began to act upon these questions by inviting the Presbytery to respond and plan the future together, using the World Café small group discussion model. The comprehensive results of this planning activity were posted on the website and published in Out and About to transparently share responses with the whole Presbytery.
The PCC then took these responses, grouping them into areas for further discernment and development. The Moderator appointed two task forces—the Task Force on Presbytery Gatherings and the Task Force on Healing and Reconciliation—to specifically address areas of immediate concern. These groups worked diligently throughout 2014 to explore more deeply the ways in which our Presbytery gatherings and our personal relationships might be enriched in ways that would address the four major focus questions. These task forces presented their reports at the end of 2014. Moreover, the newly-constituted Vision and Renewal Task Force, now with a re-focused charge, began engaged discussion about congregational renewal and the changing mission of the Church in current culture.
The 2015 PCC has been working well in several areas:
- Since each committee, commission and task force reports to PCC, the work of these groups has become more deeply integrated. A particular example is the partnership between COM (the Commission on Ministry) and CPM (the Committee on Preparation for Ministry) on a number of initiatives concerning the preparation for and practice of ministry.
- Following Presbytery approval of the Presbytery of East Iowa Finance, Investment and Funding Policies, the PCC, Trustees and Treasurer have been working on a revised report form that shows in a transparent, understandable way all of the Presbytery’s finances.
- The PCC is deepening its relationship with Camp Wyoming, inviting Executive Director Kevin Cullum to its meetings and reviewing Camp initiatives and finances. Camp Wyoming is a valuable resource for mission and ministry within our Presbytery, and the PCC aims to include and integrate the Camp into the ongoing mission and ministry.
- The PCC has engaged with the Personnel Committee in discussion of the staffing plan, a discussion that has resulted in the revised Networking Associate position and further reflection on the functions of the Financial Associate and Administrative Assistant positions.
- More broadly, the PCC has been engaged in an ongoing, deep consideration of long-range strategic planning. The process is focused upon two essential outcome questions: How do we bring meaning that is life-giving to what we do together as a Presbytery? and How do we bring joy to the Presbytery and cultivate joyfulness within community as the predominate state of being within Presbytery culture? Part of the planning process involves reviewing past initiatives to catalogue the learnings that have emerged, and prioritizing concrete areas for strategic development. The PCC intends to bring a concrete, comprehensive recommendation to either the September or November stated meeting.