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Elder Board Letter

Dear Parkview,

At Parkview Community Church, we welcome, value, and affirm women in a variety of leadership capacities. Our church presently includes women pastors, speakers, directors, teachers, deacons, life group leaders, ministry leaders, etc. However, while women have historically played key roles in Parkview’s ministries, they have not served on the Elder Council.

After an extended season of study, discussion and prayer, and in a desire to fully embrace biblical equality and shared leadership, the Elder Council has unanimously and enthusiastically voted to no longer view one’s gender as a matter related to eldership at Parkview Community Church. Moving forward, both biblically-qualified women and men will serve on the Council. This shared leadership means we believe all Christ-followers are equipped with spiritual gifts given by God for the express purpose of building up his Church. These gifts are graciously bestowed irrespective of age, race, or gender. It’s our conviction that these gifts be fully leveraged in ministry and leadership for the sake of the Gospel.

We acknowledge how serious students of scripture can reach different conclusions on this, and any number of theological and ecclesiastical matters. Our hope is that you, as a member of our Parkview family, will respectfully love and serve your church, even if we hold differing opinions on this issue of biblical equality and shared leadership.

As current elders, we are glad to serve God in a faith community where leadership will not be defined by gender. We are grateful for all the gifted women pastors, teachers, and leaders who have played a significant role in helping Parkview become the church God intended. We are about to begin the process of revising policies and procedures that will, among other things, invite women into the eldership of Parkview. In the meantime, may we continue to strive to obey the teaching of scripture– to submit to one another and follow Jesus’ example of love in treating every individual with the dignity, respect and grace that all women and men deserve.

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Greetings,
 
On August 26, 2021, IL Governor J.B. Pritzker issued an Executive Order mandating that masks be worn at all indoor gatherings. Although churches are exempt from the Executive Order, out of respect for governing authorities, Parkview has continued to ask staff, leaders, volunteers, and those attending Sunday gatherings to wear a mask while indoors. We are grateful for our people’s understanding and willingness to do so. The Governor recently indicated that his Executive Order will be rescinded on Monday, February 28th making masks no longer required in most indoor settings. In anticipation of that, on Sunday, February 27th Parkview will return to a “mask optional” policy.

While the mask policy has once again shifted, our commitment to your health and wellbeing has not. We remain dedicated to thoroughly cleaning our public spaces before and after our gatherings. Masks and hand sanitizer are still readily available to those who want them.

Navigating these difficult days has not always been clear or easy. Whatever your perspective on current realities, as fellow Christians, let us allow kindness, grace and compassion characterize our interaction and relationships. In the words of the Apostle Paul, “Let us be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”

I look forward to being with you on Sundays.
 
Grace and Peace,
 
— 
Ray S. Kollbocker
Lead Pastor