Participants in the January 2017 church officer & staff retreat.


September 14, 2017


Craig Kegerise

Co-Chair, Long Range Planning Committee

Earlier this year the Long Range Planning Committee (LRPC) sponsored a retreat for the Session, the Deacons, and the church staff. We looked at changes happening around us, including our changing society, our changing environment, our changing cultural ideals, and of course, the anticipated changes in calling a new senior pastor.

The retreat was led by Rev. Bruce Humphrey, interim pastor at the Presbyterian Congregation of Middletown. Based upon portions of the book “Canoeing the Mountains” by Tod Bolsinger, Rev. Humphrey led us through a series of exercises that helped us to recognize the many changes that have occurred in our lives over the past years.  

We looked at changes in how we communicate, how we travel, and how see our everyday lives. We then looked at where we are as a congregation, using a method called a SWOT analysis. SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. From this analysis, members were challenged to provide ideas that would promote the vision and mission of Derry Presbyterian Church. These ideas were then provided to the Session for further discussion and possible action.

Do you know the vision and mission of Derry Church? Revised in 2014, our vision statement is: 

To be a diverse community of believers, empowered by the Holy Spirit, to know, glorify, enjoy and serve God in the name of Jesus Christ.

Our Mission statement is:

To be a welcoming church family which encourages the congregation to grow in spirit, involvement, and commitment to do God’s work through worship, education, music, mission outreach and congregational caring.

Over the next few months, the LRPC, the Session and Pastor Stephen will explore the vision and mission statements, asking such questions as:

Are these statements what we want to say about Derry Presbyterian Church and its congregation?

Are the statements relevant to today’s social and political environment?

What do we need to change, if anything?

Your ideas and comments are welcome. Please contact me or any member of the LRPC: Jot Bennett, Gregg Robertson, Walter Patton, Larry Van Hise, Jim Royer, Lizzie Pease, Patrick Gavazzi, and Duncan Campbell.

Vision without action is merely a dream.
Action without vision just passes time.
Vision with action can change the world.

-- Joel A. Barker