Church seeks to be ‘model employer’
Steve DeVane, BR Managing Editor
July 13, 2009

Church seeks to be ‘model employer’

Church seeks to be ‘model employer’
Steve DeVane, BR Managing Editor
July 13, 2009

COATS — A seminar in early 2007 convinced Drew Woerner that a church should be a “model employer” in its community.

That belief prompted a policy review and changes that have moved Coats Baptist Church closer to being such a model.

Woerner, chairman of the finance committee at Coats for six of the past seven years, attended a seminar that Johnny Ross, state representative for GuideStone Financial Resources, led for churches in the Little River Baptist Association.

BR photo by Steve DeVane

Drew Woerner, right, chairman of the finance committee at Coats Baptist Church, helped his church move toward becoming a better employer. Jesse Mooney, left, pastor of the church, said the staff is extremely appreciative.

He came away from the meeting so convinced the church should be a “model employer” that he asked to speak to his church deacons.

He told them the church should be a model and it should address staff salaries and benefits in light of that.

The personnel committee, made up of the chairmen of various committees, studied the issue. Woerner said the group relied heavily on the principles Ross taught.

The personnel committee discovered that some staff members needed raises of 15 to 20 percent, Woerner said and agreed to ask the deacons to raise the salaries to the desired level over the next three years.

When presented with the information, the deacons suggested they raise the salaries all the way the next year and the church agreed.

The church also adopted salary and compensation benefit policies. The document includes the scriptural basis for salary and fringe benefit policies, citing 1 Cor. 9:14, Gal. 6:6, Luke 10:7 and 1 Timothy 5:7-18. The policy says the church intends “to have competitive salary pay grades for every staff position.”

“The Bible says you should take care of those who preach, teach and lead,” Woerner said.

The policies also include sections on health insurance, disability, dental insurance, life insurance and retirement.

Ministers on staff also get housing allowance and extra pay to offset payments they make to Social Security.

Reimbursable expenses are also covered in the policies.

Jesse Mooney, pastor at Coats, said the staff is extremely appreciative of the support.

“They already loved the church, but they have a greater love and appreciation because of that commitment,” he said.

Woerner said he called Ross often while the committee was working on the policies. Ross also came and did the seminar at the church that he’d done earlier for the association.

“He was just a tremendous help,” Woerner said. “He was able to keep me from going in some pitfalls because of his experience.”

Scripture references (NIV)

  • 1 Corinthians 9:14 — In the same way, the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should receive their living from the gospel.

  • Galatians 6:6 — Anyone who receives instruction in the word must share all good things with his instructor.

  • Luke 10:7 — Stay in that house, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house.

  • 1 Timothy 5:7-18 — v. 18: For the Scripture says, “Do not muzzle the ox while it is treading out the grain,” and “The worker deserves his wages.”

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Special series — Body parts

Did you know you have a large church staff? Your gifts through the Cooperative Program support a staff resource at the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina that exists to serve your church.

The Biblical Recorder continues a series — Body Parts — featuring one of your Convention staff members, and churches which has grown through that staff member’s ministry. Body Parts is inspired by 1 Cor. 12:12 — “The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ” (NIV). The parts of the Baptist State Convention exist to serve you.

This week: Johnny Ross, consultant with GuideStone Financial Resources.

Coming soon: Eddie Thompson, family ministry.

Visit Body Parts, a Biblical Recorder special series.