The Role of Fourth-Day Coordinators
By Freddie Bell-Berti and Angela Andrew
Editor’s note: Many congregations in Fairfield County Tres Dias have special servants know as “fourth-day coordinators.” These are individuals or teams within the church that support new pescadores from that church and keep everyone in the congregation who has had the TD experience in touch with the larger community. Here is a case study of activity in one church, Eastchester Presbyterian Church, in the Bronx.
Over the years, more than 90 members of the Eastchester Presbyterian Church (EPC) have attended a Tres Dias weekend. As you may imagine, keeping a large Tres Dias community at a church active and contributing to both its local church community and to the larger Tres Dias of Fairfield County community can be a challenge We would like to share three things that the pescadores at EPC do that help to keep us connected with each other and also contribute to the TDFC community (in addition to participating in various reunion groups).
The first thing we do is write to each EPC pescador several times a year (before the secuela we host and before each weekend), encouraging our pescadores to provide palanca to the candidates and team members, as well as reminding them where to find application and sponsor forms as well as team bio forms.
Second, we hold Tres Dias community meetings about three times each year (announced by email, USPS mail, in the Sunday announcements, and in the church calendar of upcoming meeting dates in our bulletin). In addition to opening (and closing) our meetings with prayer, a pescador offers a brief devotion to focus us on the Lord and his grace and mercy. At these meetings we encourage each other in sponsorship and develop ideas for palanca from our community for upcoming weekends-as well as individual palanca. And we encourage each other to submit bio forms and serve on teams when we are invited by rectors.
Third, ask all EPC pescadores who are able to do so to contribute $40 each year (or $10 quarterly) to our “Scholarship Fund.” In some ways this is the most important thing we do, since it makes it possible for team members and candidates with limited resources to make the suggested contribution, thus removing any guilt or stigma they may feel about their inability to make the contribution-and relieving sponsors of the need to provide some or all of the suggested contribution, since they, too, may not have the resources to do so. (This is all handled by our fourth-day coordinators and treasurer, who may be approached by a member of our community about a candidate, or by a team member who needs assistance. The names of those receiving assistance remain anonymous.)