Structures Workgroup Report to 2014 Convention

Structures Workgroup Report to 2014 Convention

The Structures Workgroup report to the 2014 Convention of the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth is submitted by Louis Eichenberger. You may download a PDF of this report here.

The Structures Workgroup met on January 25, 2014, February 22, 2014, June 7, 2014, August 23, 2014 and October 11, 2014 with a final meeting for the year scheduled on November 22, 2014.

Structures Group membership changes since late 2013:

  • Sam McClain resigned as Structures Workgroup leader on October 13, 2013 and Louis Eichenberger assumed the group leader position at the January 25, 2014 meeting.
  • Bruce Coggin has also left the Structures Workgroup and Joe Christopher has taken over as secretary for the Structures Workgroup effective with the August 23, 2014 meeting.
  • Lauren Gough joined the Structures Workgroup and then had to resign due to health issues.
  • Kimberly Kingsbury has joined the Structures Workgroup.
  • Kathleen Wells has left the group due to other immediate support needs and commitments to the diocese.

The results of these changes are that the Structures Workgroup consists of Louis Eichenberger, Convener;  Joe Christopher, Secretary; and members Kimberly Kingsbury, Brenda Hathaway, Bob Hicks and JD Todd.

During this past year, the Structures Workgroup performed the following activities:

  • Presented to the March 1, 2014 Executive Council a resolution that was passed to move the Constitution and Canons Committee under the Management Workgroup from its previous reporting position under the Structures Workgroup. This move was made to make the alignment of the Constitution and Canons Committee consistent with the other canonical entities of similar diocesan stature.
  • The Structures Workgroup picked six diocesan organizations for review this year and sent five of the selected groups (listed below) the survey used by the Structures Workgroup to start our review of how these groups are performing their identified roles in the diocese:
    • Episcopal Church Women / United Thank Offering – Sandy Shockley
    • Youth Council – Amy Haynie
    • Church Planting – Curt Norman
    • Cursillo –Tony Hiatt / John Banks
    • Commission on Ministry – Melanie Barbarito
  • The Structures Workgroup discovered that the Commission on Church Architecture and Allied Arts called for in the Canons had not been staffed / functionally did not exist. After consultation with Bishop High, the Structures Workgroup has agreed that even though there is no provision in the Canons for not staffing any identified commission of group when it has no work, common sense and the current limited human resources in the diocese make this the reasonable approach. No further action relative to the Commission on Church Architecture will be taken until such time as the Bishop determines there is need for the Commission to be staffed and creates the Commission.
  • The Structures Workgroup reviewed the initial and revised responses from Amy Haynie regarding the Youth Council.
  • The Structures Workgroup is currently reviewing the responses from the Episcopal Church Women and Cursillo groups and will then begin the reviews of the responses from the Commission on Church Planting and the Commission on Ministry
  • The Structures Workgroup is also considering improvements to the survey form being used to aid in getting the responses we are looking for.
  • The Structures Workgroup may look at other methods or actions the group could take to further develop the performance by the group of the goals set out for it by the canons: Canon 10.5.2.d Structures – This group carries out the Executive Council’s responsibilities  for the review and evaluation of the effectiveness of diocesan structure, programs and services and for the maintenance of sound and accepted best practices in the affairs of the Diocese, its organizations, institutions, and congregations.

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