Simplified structure covers all the administrative functions in the church and provides an alignment of authority, accountability, and responsibility in accordance with the Book of Discipline for the UMC. But how does that really work?

The best way to understand simplified structure is that your Governing Board/Church Council also becomes your Staff Parish Committee, Trustees and Finance Committee.  (The decision to include Leadership Development/Nominations in this mix will be left up to the individual church.) The people on the Board/Church Council cover all these administrative functions so that you don’t have lots of people on committees needing to go to lots of meetings to get anything done.  If you have a dozen people on the Church Council, three people do the homework and legwork for Trustees, three people do the homework and legwork for Finance; and three people do the homework and legwork for Staff Parish. They bring what they have to the larger body for discussion and decision. It takes a lot of time out of the decision-making process.

For further explanation, watch the video below in which Ed Fenstermacher explains Simplified Structure more in depth with practical examples. We also invite you to request a coach who will present the Simplified Structure workshop to the church and then be available for a phone conversation with the pastor quarterly to answer any questions and to make sure everything is working correctly.

Other Resources:

Worksheet to develop your church’s organizational structure: Simplified Structure By-laws Template

Book by Kay Kotan & Blake Bradford entitled Mission Possible:  A Simple Structure for Missional Effectiveness

Workshop facilitators are also available to present the Simplified Structure and Accountable Leadership Workshop to the local church for a small fee. Please contact Brenda Gross for additional details.