Want Something Done? Try ‘Type-A’ People

Post a Comment » Written on March 10th, 2006     
Filed under: News
ATLANTA, GA (March 10, 2006) – Tim Rodgers, pastor of New Life Covenant Church, knows how to get church property spruced up in a hurry – find a team of Type-A personalities and let them go at it. This time, though, the team found him.

As a prelude to their recent annual leadership retreat, executives from Covenant Retirement Communities (CRC) wanted to devote a weekend to a mission project. The organization is developing a diversity initiative and sought to make the mission project a complement to its exploration of racial reconciliation that was scheduled during the retreat.

Tim Johnson They decided that New Life, an urban church located in an inner city neighborhood just northwest of the Georgia Dome, was the perfect location. The church has been the final destination for many Sankofa Journeys, welcomes many volunteers, and has a lot of work that needs to be done on its well-worn warehouse location. The weekend mission was arranged by CRC in cooperation with Rodgers – then the scheduled business portion of the leadership retreat commenced.

The 20 CRC leaders arrived on a Saturday and immediately found they had their work cut out for them:

  • Waterproof and paint the 15-foot walls of the 2,000-square-foot area to be used for an after-school program, fellowship hall and coffee bar where members could hang out (lower photo)
  • Paint the ceiling
  • Decoratively enhance the cream-colored warehouse walls of the sanctuary by painting the bottom section blue up to chair-rail height (top photo shows Tim Johnson painting the chair rail section)
  • Paint all the doors in the church navy blue
  • Pick up trash in the neighborhood

A small church with just 40 regular Sunday attendees, New Life has been using its sanctuary for its after-school program. They wanted a place the kids could call their own and looked like it was designed for them. The church also would not have to rearrange the furniture every week for Sunday services, which was one of the reasons the 12-year-old church moved to the warehouse location seven years ago.

Church members have been working on the job for six months. Working with six church members, the CRC team finished everything on its to-do list, thus making significant progress for the congregation. The church now needs to complete the electrical work, acid stain the concrete floor for a groove-free tile appearance, and install the kitchen.

Painting the Walls “We got a lot more done than we anticipated,” says Rodgers. “They’re very obviously self starters and self motivators – Type-A personalities.”

The experience had added benefits. Not only did the CRC vice presidents, national directors and campus administrators fulfill their mission, they also experienced first-hand the work of a racial reconciliation ministry.

“We want to see people reconnect across class and race boundaries,” Rodgers says. To help the administrators with that goal, five church members drove 45 minutes to the retreat center on a Tuesday afternoon to participate in the team’s discussion of racial diversity.

“It’s more effective to discuss racial diversity when the group is racially diverse,” says Jack Harriff, CRC vice president of human relations. “The team from New Life Covenant helped open our eyes to their racial experience.”

Copyright © 2011 The Evangelical Covenant Church.

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