Welcome to the Local Mission and Ministry Review support page. Here you will find a brief introduction to the process and links to all the documents that will help you through the process.

What is Local Mission & Ministry Review?

Exactly what it says—a reflective look at the whole life of a local church, that will guide its future life in the way God is calling it.

It encourages the church to play its part in God’s mission in its locality and identifies the resources needed to develop and support the ministry that will underpin that mission.  It also assists Synod by making it aware of the needs of local churches and enables it to make good, informed, judgement when awarding loans and grants.

What is involved?

  • A Review Partner is appointed to support the church through the process.
  • The Church life review has as its objective the creation of, or review of, an Active Pastorate Profile (APP), which reflects honestly the life of the church and lays out its vision and aims for the coming years.
  • Ministers accompanied self-appraisal (MASA) is an existing programme that encourages ministers to review their ministry.  They are assigned an appraisal partner  who is trained to assist in this confidential reflective practice.
  • The final stage brings the two parts  together to draw up a Minister’s Role Description, which details the part a minister—and elders—will play in the church/es to fulfil their mission & ministry aims.

How does a Local Mission and Ministry Review happen?

Initially, each year the Synod Pastoral Committee will identify the churches in the Synod who will begin the LMMR process during the following year and these churches will be invited to a meeting to have the process explained more fully, to meet representatives from churches who have already completed an Active Pastorate Profile and to meet Review Partners.  This is the beginning of a five year pattern, and for the Initial six months, during which time the pastorate will be creating its Active Pastorate Profile(s), it will have the help of a Review Partner.

The five year pattern of the LMMR process is:

Year 1   Create the Active Pastorate Profile by doing a review of the mission and ministry of the church including a new Minister’s Role Description.  Minister(s) to complete MASA Programme/timetable any resourcing work.

Year 2 Review Mission Priorities, statistics, Appendix 1, Policies as appropriate and note any major changes to church life.

Years 3 & 4 As for year 2, option for minister to take part in MASA and if this   happens it may be appropriate to update the Minister’s Role Description.

Year 5 as for year 2.

In the subsequent Year 1 of the process, if the APP has been updated as recommended, the process will not be as onerous but churches will still have the help of a Review Partner to engage in a complete review of church life, think through Mission Priorities for the next five years, review external changes to their community and ecumenical changes which may affect the pastorate and rewrite the APP appropriately.

It is anticipated that the year 1 review and the creation of the APP should take no more than six months. 

Once completed and approved by Church meeting an electronic copy of the profile is sent to the Pastoral Advisor.  Annual updates to the Appendices should be sent to the Pastoral Advisor and should the main profile need updating an updated copy should be sent to the Pastoral Advisor.  The less personal information in the main body of the profile the easier it is to keep up to date.

For more information on Creating the Active Pastorate Profile please see the booklet ‘Guidelines to Compiling an Active Pastorate Profile’ available from your Review Partner or to download.

The Review Partner will accompany the Pastorate through the process of compiling the Active Pastorate Profile. Where a church is in vacancy the Interim Moderator will act as the Review Partner.

The Review Partner is there to help the church complete its Active Pastorate Profile.  The Review Partner will have an initial meeting with the Minister and Elders to go through the process and help the church decide on its strategy for creating the APP, this will vary with each church and its circumstances.

The Review Partner will agree the extent of their involvement in the process and the various stages at which they will meet with the church.  Some churches may appoint a special task group for creating the APP and the Review Partner may meet or be in contact this group at some stages during the process.

The Review Partner will also ensure that the MASA process is in place.  Once MASA is completed the Review Partner will meet with the Minister and Elders to help formulate the Minister’s Role Description which in the case of a joint or group pastorate will cover all churches.

The Review Partner will ensure that a copy of the completed APP is sent electronically to the Synod Pastoral Advisor.

A Review Partner may recommend a pastorate makes use of other resources  within the Synod to help further thinking on the Mission priorities or on  Stewardship issues and can be the link in introducing this help.

Having worked hard to create your Active Pastoral Profile keeping it up to date will make things easier next time and is a useful tool to review how you are using your resources—people, skills and money.

Please see the leaflet ‘Annual Reflective Review’ for ideas on how to keep your APP up to date available from your Review Partner or to download.

Additional Support and Resources

Whilst this may for some, appear a daunting task, remember that you are not alone in this task and that your Review Partner is available to support you.  In addition for specific aspects you can draw on help from Synod Staff.

For help with including children and young people in the process you can speak to Michelle Howard, the Church Development Worker.  Jan Murphy Synod Safeguarding Officer can offer help with Safeguarding policies.

For advice on stewardship and church resources you can speak to Dick Gray, the Synod Treasurer. Dick has a particular interest in helping churches explore good stewardship—the best use of gifts, skills, money and buildings.
Email: dickgray643@gmail.com
Telephone: 01626 890572

For advice on Property matters you can speak to Raoul Hewitt, the Synod Property and Trust Officer and Paula McDonagh, Assistant Property and Trust Officer.  Please see the Synod Website Property pages for helpful guides on many aspects of propert and Health and Safety matters.  http://www.urcsouthwest.org.uk/finance/trust-and-property/
Email: property@urcsouthwest.org.uk 
Telephone: 01823 275470