Pastor's Blog


November 5: Mission and Vision -- Your Responses

I want to thank everyone who took the time to respond to the brief questionnaire we sent out to help us consider new mission and vision statements for Derry. Your feedback has helped us consider who we are and who we want to be.

When asked to consider why Derry church exists, you overwhelmingly responded in various forms that Derry exists to worship God, reach out to others with God’s love through mission work and evangelization, and provide a place for Christians to grow in faith together. 

We asked you to think about why you invest your life into Derry and the most common responses were because Derry has given you so much: community, support, love and hope. You said you believe Derry is able to do good and important things and that you want to be a part of the work Derry does through and for Christ. 

You shared how Derry fills needs in your life like the need for spiritual growth and formation. You responded that Derry provides meaningful relationships of care, support, and fun. You talked about inspiring music, opportunities to do good in the world, and a place to be yourself where you are loved. Your answers show that Derry isn’t just a place to come to out of routine, but a needed place in our community and in your lives for so many reasons.

Finally, we asked what hopes you have for Derry. Many of you hoped for continued growth, especially among young people. You hope that Derry continues on for another 300 years. One of the most common responses was that Derry become more diverse and inclusive in its membership. You hope that we increase our missional engagement and support. It is great that you have so many hopes for our church; it means we have a bright future ahead of us.

We are working on new mission and vision statements for the church that reflect what you shared. Our mission statement should summarize Derry’s reason for existence or what we’re supposed to be doing. The statement answers the question what are we here to do and why?

Our vision statement should articulate where we want to go as church in the future. It describes what the organization should look like if we’re living out our mission statement and being who we feel called to be.  Our vision is what we want our church to be even if we aren’t quite there yet. Mission defines the overall strategy, while vision pictures a specific future.

A small working group of Elders who serve on the Long-Range Planning Committee and on the Communications & Technology Committee are working on statements to present to Session this month for discussion and we look forward to sharing with you our progress and the proposed statements.

Thank you for being a part of this process as we help plan our path forward as Derry Church together. 

In common calling,

Rev. Stephen McKinney-Whitaker