Jim's Reflection May 2018

Over the course of the last two months, members of the Orinda Community Church participated in an All-Church Survey, providing data for the Pastoral Search Committee.  Sixty-six people responded, and the answers provide a good snapshot of who we are, and where we would like to go in the next few years.


Listed below are the results of the multiple-choice and “fill in the blank” questions.  The numbers in the left column represent how many chose certain options.  (There are pages of short answer responses, which we will need to collate and synthesize before passing them along). 


Thanks to all of you for your input.  What comes through loud and clear is that we truly care for one another, we love worshipping together and being together, we want to make a difference in the world, and we want to keep looking for ways that we can better serve the families and youth of our church - and the greater community.   


The fun part now is figuring out how we as a church can move some of these hopes forward (it’s up to each of us!), and also anticipating how a new Associate Minister can help empower us to make these dreams a reality.


As we seek to make the Realm of God present in this place - and the world that we live in - there is much good work to be done!


Which of these Ministries/Committees should be the primary focus of Orinda Community Church? (top four)


53 – Music and Worship

52 – Youth, Children, and Families

51 – Care and Fellowship / Community Life

40 – Mercy and Justice


Which of these Ministries/Committees should be the primary focus of Orinda Community Church? (top six)


48 – Children and Family Ministries

48 – Service Opportunities

46 – Youth Ministries

40 – Ministry to Seniors

36 – Visitation / Pastoral Care

33 – Women’s Ministries


What gifts, abilities, experience, and interests do you think would be most helpful in our Ministerial Staff? (the committee's objective is to find an Associate Minister whose gifts complement our Senior Minister)


52 – Community Life / Fellowship

50 – Pastoral Care

44 - Preaching

37 – Youth Ministry

36 – Children’s Ministry

35 – Empowerment and Development of Church Member Engagement


Five years ago, our church took a similar survey and named the following as the number one priority on our church profile:


"With the help of the Spirit that has guided us so far, we must grow this congregation.  We have a large gap in our congregational demographic between our older congregants and new young families that we will need help in attracting from a community that is more secular, is busier, and has less traditional connection to 'church.'"


When asked if this statement should continue to be our number one priority, exactly half the respondents leaned toward “strongly agree” (#s 8, 9, or 10), and the average response was 7.1


What preferences would you like our new minister to have concerning worship?


We had the perfect bell curve between “Desire to incorporate new styles of liturgy and music” and “A preference for traditional forms of music and liturgy”


When asked for comments on the “Strengths of our worship services,” the most common (¾ of the responses) included an appreciation of our music program.


How much change are you comfortable with as we look at the years ahead?  (With 1 being “No Change” and 10 being “Lots of Change”), respondents answered with an average of 6.7 – with an almost perfect bell curve over the number 7.


The average age (and median age) of respondents was just under 70 years old.


Average length of time at Orinda Community Church is 23.5 years, with a median of 20 years.


Most respondents rate their attendance at church on the side of “Every Week” (#s 7-10), and their involvement as somewhere between “Involved” and “Extremely Involved”