Sounds quite dramatic: the protestant church congregations in the city area have now signed an agreement, paving the way for a regional consultation by the rummelsberg community academy. Sounds dramatic, but it’s quite harmless and a sign of good cooperation, says pastor michael meyer zu horste of the church congregation st. Georg: "now the path of further development of the cooperation and an intensive collaboration of the four evangelical church communities in the neustadt basin begins, in order to be able to meet the challenges that lie ahead of us."
Meyer zu horste explains that with their joint advance, the neustadt congregations are meeting the goal that was recently set at the state synod: the church congregations were advised to think more in terms of space in the future. "My community, your community – such thinking is no longer appropriate today. "Our congregation" – this spirit must return. For the protestant church in neustadt, cooperation is no longer a foreign word anyway. So there are between neustadt (st. Georg), haarbrucken-ketschenbach-thann and fechheim have long had a cooperation agreement. The was closed in 2012, when the job plan of the evangelical state church brought shortcuts with it. In 2020, there will be a new job plan. It’s a good idea to prepare for this now by expanding the existing agreement to include the wildenheid-meilschnitz congregation.
First of all the full-time
As a pastor from haarbruck, romina rieder is also on the road in other communities of the city. She is used to not operating within the boundaries of her local church. But why not think further? In the future, rieder can well imagine that each congregation will be able to show off its strengths even more in the association. One must not moo elsewhere about the organization of a family service, if for example in fechheim with its great church band such a service is already pending.
Of course, says michael meyer zu horste, the main focus of the consultation by the rummelsberg community academy is first and foremost the full-time staff of the church congregations. "We want to summarize who had to do what", says the head of the neustadt parish office. Once these facts have been established, perhaps not everyone will have to do everything. Jorg herrmann (pastor in wildenheid-meilschnitz) comes up with an example: "kindergartens involve an enormous administrative burden. There must be a way for us to relieve each other." His colleague from fechheim, ulrike schmidt-rothmund, agrees: "we have to manage to make clever use of our resources." This also includes supporting each other at events – but there should be no fear of anything being taken away from you in any church congregation.
In any case, there are plenty of examples of how the pastors of neustadt can get along well with each other. Romina rieder refers to the rough stage of the neustadt st.-georgskirchengemeinde, which the haarbruckers have borrowed for their christmas service before. Michael meyer zu horste adds that there has long been successful cooperation between neustadt and haarbrucken in confirmation work. The service to kick off the neustadt puppet festival on the neustadt market square was much more public-spirited and no less successful. "It was a good example of good cooperation", reminds romina rieder.
The pastors want to and will probably formulate the rough visions only after consulting the rummelsberg specialists. According to michael meyer zu horste, one thing would certainly be a great relief: a coordinator for the church work in the neustadt senior citizens’ homes.
The pastors from the neustadt basin are aware that many a believer will be concerned about the individual identity of his church community. But romina rieder does not at all believe that this will only arise among older parishioners: "the will to cooperate is not a question of age."