BOUNDARIES…The very clear policy on “Boundaries” adopted by the board of oversight. This is about moral and financial policies and is enforced immediately when broken.
“HIT BY A TRUCK” PROCEDURE…The very clear steps and reassignment of leadership authority or pulpit responsibility to be in force immediately in the case of a tragedy or illness that prevents leadership capabilities for the pastor. There should be no question.
This is true in a church with a large pastoral staff — who is “number 2”? It is equally true when there is one person on staff. There also have been cases where a pastor abruptly resigned on Thursday! Or where severe flu hit Saturday evening! Just to say, “That has never happened here,” is not wise.
SECURITY PROCEDURES … Policies developed by the security team and approved by the board of oversight as to what to do when there is a breach of security or public danger because of an active shooter or invasion of the public gathering. You do not want to be deciding on the spot. Many small churches have assigned no security responsibility.
FINANCIAL POLICIES FOR CHECK-WRITING AND HANDLING OF MONEY… There are still churches where one person counts or handles the money or writes the checks, and that should change immediately with written policies written by the strong financial team and approved by the board of oversight.
EMERGENCY IN THE PULPIT … Even a very small church should have steps and a person or team assigned for someone approaching the pulpit for a questionable purpose, or what to do if the pastor of any age faints or has another medical emergency while up front. This involves another staff person if there is one and a person dear the pulpit who has security responsibilities. Some churches say they will play this by ear, and that is not sensible.
A ‘TRAGEDY’ SERMON … The pastor must have a sermon developed to use if a tragedy of major proportions happens the week before that Sunday. No one, the Sunday after 9/11 should have been preaching on Leviticus or James or anything but verses about tragedies and comfort and God’s teaching about pain.
MEDICAL EMERGENCY IN THE BUILDING … It does seem best to have a medical person assigned to take the lead in the sanctuary or building, if there are regular attenders who have such training; also to have several people trained to use a defibrillator if there is a heart attack in the building. You do have one?
LIABILITY AND EXEMPTION STATEMENTS IN THE CHURCH CONSTITUTION OR BY-LAWS. Not that anyone would sue a church!