A Church Library Currently in Transition

Back in January (2019) our pastor and staff started the process of assessing all the ministries of our church as to how each on aligns to the mission, vision, core values, and discipleship process of our church. They determined that our library ministry needed to move in the same direction our church family is going.

On March 27th, I officially became the library team leader with no team members. The first task was moving the collection to a new room being created by a building program. With the services of my Sunday School class, we prepared the collection for the move and made the move in four weeks. All of us have jobs and have daily commitments so most of our work was done on Wednesday evenings. The actual move itself had to be done in a few days so many of us readjusted our schedules in order to make it happen by the deadline. To God be the glory!

Our next step was unloading the borrowed carts which made the logistics possible. That took three Wednesday evenings. Members of my Sunday School class plus a couple of others have continued to set up the space. Currently we are doing an inventory to confirm what items are on the shelves. We hope to finish the inventory during the next two Wednesday evenings.

Layered on top of these actions, we are also working out a new direction for this library ministry. We are dramatically changing the purpose and mission of the collection and the actions of the ministry. Our focus is on making disciples. As we finalize our concept, I will share our two-page description with you. We are very excited about what God is doing in our midst! Hopefully, we will have our grand opening on August 11 when our new building opens.

Grateful,

Morlee Maynard

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Comment by Morlee Maynard on October 23, 2019 at 10:14am

Did not realize how behind I am on sharing what is happening with the Enrichment Center. During these weeks we have been busy processing new items, deselecting items to remove, rearranging the items on the shelves, and growing our team. 

Tonight I will meet with our Adult Engagement Coordinators for the third time. Our Minister of Education wants to include our Topic-a-Month strategy as part of the DiscipleLife Ministry starting in January. So we are going to write a "course" description and identify the topics. I'll share what we come up with by the end of the week.

We are still waiting on the furniture to arrive. A TV will be installed today that we will use to promote new items. 

God continues to lead us as we seek to transition to intentionally help our people grow in an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ through reading. 

Comment by Morlee Maynard on August 29, 2019 at 2:10pm

Last night I met with the youth ministry staff about where to locate the collection for students. The Main location of the Enrichment Center is fairly out of the way of the youth areas for Bible study and worship. We decided to keep it in the Main location since youth have very little time in the youth building for using the collection. The staff is going to do a concerted effort in all of their newsletters, emails, posters, and so on to direct youth to visit the Main location. If that does not get traction, we will consider purchasing a booktruck/cart to use in Elevate which is our contemporary worship center. And we chose a parent for me to invite to be our Youth Engagement Coordinator. Can't wait to get this started!

Last night our Enrichment Center team reset the room for Fall. Displayed items that relate to the sermon series and the Bible studies for all ages. Very pleased with how the windows are working on the hallway. Had a lot more guests last night than previous weeks! The word is getting out! 

The budget for 2020 is due tomorrow! Just about ready to send it in. Whew!!

Comment by Morlee Maynard on August 13, 2019 at 2:02pm

I was wondering if that would interest anyone. Our public library has engagement coordinators on their roster of personnel. It hit me that our church libraries could have specific people with the responsibilities to connect our libraries with specific target audiences. Not a new concept, but perhaps a new title. I hope to meet with two couples this week to create this new position with them. One couple has a heart for parents today who do not value bringing their children to church on a regular basis. The other couple have different interests. The husband may be interested in targeting men. The wife has a ministry with preparing children and teens for what is ahead of them. So our plans call for Engagement Coordinators with preschoolers, children, youth/young adults, emerging adults, men, women, … the list is endless! For example, the youth engagement team will include youth and one or two of their leaders. They will run the youth Enrichment Center that will be in the Youth Building. The preschool and children engagement coordinators will be responsible for taking a cart of books for preschoolers and children to the Welcome Center in that part of our building every Sunday and Wednesday. These engagement coordinators will participate in selecting items for their target audiences. They will be the ones to host book clubs during the years. As this develops, I will keep you posted. AND, if anyone already has engagement coordinators by another title, I want to learn from your experiences.

Comment by Lynda Morrison on August 13, 2019 at 1:38pm

So I have NEVER heard the term: Engagement Coordinator. Can you please fill me in on what their responsibilities are? I could make a stab at a guess or check the 'net, but I would rather hear from you, Morlee!

Comment by Morlee Maynard on August 13, 2019 at 12:49pm

We did it!! We launched the Enrichment Center on Saturday (the10th) during our new churchwide  open house. Loved giving out new book marks as a great crowd dropped in to check out the room. 

Sunday was our first day to have the Enrichment Center open ready to check out items AND the first day for our church family with a new schedule. Promotion Day! As everyone was finding their way to new rooms and keeping up with the time changes, we only had a few people drop in the Enrichment Center. But we checked out 7 items and reserved 1 item. Due to  our window displays, 6 of the 7 checked out items drew people in to check out items displayed in the windows. 

During the Open House and on Sunday we had people fill out information forms if they had never checked out anything in the former library. Our Atriuum catalog only had people who were members when the collection was automated 20 years ago and newer members who had checked items out. So yesterday I added 33 new customers and updated the profiles of 22 customers. We will add more on Wednesday.

Our work continues as we process new items, work through a deselection process for about 50 boxes of weeded items, train our team in how to use Atriuum, and the never ending process of shifting the shelves. Our team is growing in numbers (now 12) as well as growing in relationships. Lots of new connections. And my next task is to begin enlisting Engagement Coordinators. Can't wait to add this aspect to our ministry!

Thank you to those of you who have prayed for us. 

Our prayer continues: 

Father, enrich us to tear down the walls that separate us from the communities that surround our church family as we build bridges to people who need a Savior and to a community of fully devoted disciples of Jesus Christ.

We have pictures, but I am having trouble preparing them to post here. Will do as soon as things work. :)

Comment by Bev League on August 2, 2019 at 8:52am

Thank you for sharing your journey. God does provide above and beyond all we could ask or think! Getting excited about celebrating with you.

Comment by Morlee Maynard on July 26, 2019 at 5:22pm

Last Tuesday I talked with each member of the transition team in follow up to the letter I sent each of them. All of them agreed to continue serving as we become the Enrichment Center Team. On that Wednesday during a team meeting each of them filled out a Duties Grid as to what they want to do on the team. All of the duties were checked except gift processing. All of them checked more than one duty. 

On Monday of this week I sent similar letters to four people about serving as Engagement Coordinators and one senior adult about serving as a Review Reader. I will call them this coming Tuesday. And this week I was given information about two new members who are interested in serving with us. Both have library experience. Amazing how God provides!

We had another workday Wednesday. Processed more books, shifted the shelving to accommodate new books, and had a meeting to think through the Open House on August 10 and what all we need to do these last two weeks. Still waiting on electrical outlets. Purchased a printer today.

God is faithful!! Two more weeks!

Comment by Morlee Maynard on July 11, 2019 at 3:12pm

A month from today the FHBC Enrichment Center opens our doors to welcome our church family to new opportunities to enrich their walks on their lifelong discipleship pathways. Yesterday afternoon seven of us spent several hours processing additions to our collection in a room that had no air conditioning. The construction crew are moving the thermostat so we just used a fan. How's that for sacrificing for the cause? Three boxes are waiting in the back of my car for me to add them to our catalog. Amy Layne, our team member who is a school librarian has been a great instructor! We could not have done all that we have done without her. God provides!

I spent this morning writing personal letters to each of the members of our transition team inviting them to pray about joining the "implementation" team. In the letter I told them that I will call them Tuesday evening for us to talk through options for each one to serve. 

We will be meeting next Wednesday evening to work out the times we will be open on Sundays and Wednesdays. And considering a schedule for our team members. And our processing additions to the collection continues!

Comment by Morlee Maynard on July 7, 2019 at 7:24am

We considered several names which all had connections to discipleship. The final two options were Discipleship Center and Enrichment Center. We found people in our church could relate to enrichment better than discipleship. Perhaps that says a lot about our church family due to the accountability that goes with the word "discipleship."  On the other hand, we also considered those visiting our church. For years, our church had and in some ways still has a program called Discipleship Ministry. Took place on Sunday evenings. Now it is called DiscipleLife. Mainly takes place on Wednesdays and weekdays. The word "Enrichment" seems to relate to all of the ministries of our church in the minds of our people. Although we now think of all of our ministries as making disciples. 

Comment by Marcy Hoggard on July 6, 2019 at 7:24am

I am curious about your choice of name for the library. I know you spent a lot of time considering this. It looks like the focus of your mission is discipleship. Is there any particular reason your chose "Enrichment Center" instead of "Discipleship Center?"

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