Oct 2014 President's Letter
Each year we do a survey of all our communities to determine the assessment each community owes. This past year we modified the formula so it would be based on new pescadores instead of active members. This was done for two reasons. First, to establish the assessment level based on a number that is auditable, and second, to measure the health of our communities. If a community reports a significant drop in new pescadores, compared with prior years, it raises a red flag that the community may need attention.
At about the same time as the change in assessment, we developed what we refer to as training modules for new community startups. We realized the activities described in the modules could also be used to bring new stamina to established communities. We announced in this newsletter and also at International Secretariat meetings, that we had help to offer: Help in the form of money from our Tres Dias Fund, and help by applying some of the ideas in the new training modules.
We were delighted when South Hudson Tres Dias called and asked us for help to revitalize their community. I asked our VP of Membership, Frank Yarbrough, and our Executive Director, Paul Weis, to visit with South Hudson and explain what we had to offer.The majority of ideas from the training modules represent what we have observed as “best practices” used by strong communities. They are not part of the Essentials, and as such, we offer them as suggestions.
At our Assembly in Atlanta, I invited Marjory Amatos from South Hudson to describe what happened at their meeting. “Our committee was so on fire after Paul and Frank left,” Marjory reported, “And we started making changes almost immediately.” Secuelas became open, she explained. The requirement that new Pescadores cannot be on team for one year was struck from the policy manual. New positions were added to enhance the team. A Facebook page with 30-second testimonials was created. Most important, there were to be no more “secrets” about what happens on a weekend.
Frank Yarbrough added a postscript to the report: “You taught us as much as we taught you. It’s about communities working together.”
Many other suggestions were made at the meeting, more than can be covered in this brief letter. If your community needs rejuvenating, please just give us a call, and we will sit down with your group and share this menu of suggestions.Who knows, your struggling community might just grow and blossom with the full color and fragrance that testifies of the new life God has breathed into it.May God richly bless you for all the great works and testimonies each of you present, as you serve Him in this great ministry.
In His Service,