The Equipper Newsletter
January 3, 2011
Churches Equipping Saints for Service

 Canned Peaches or Fresh Lettuce?
by Karen Kogler
I've been thinking of keeping a can of peaches and a head of lettuce in my church office. Or bringing them to a staff meeting. Or pulling them out the next time I talk to some ministry leaders about volunteers.

It goes back to the day some volunteers brought me something they found when cleaning out a Sunday school supply closet -- an institution-size can of peaches. We couldn't figure out how that had been used in Sunday school! Then someone recalled that, years before, that closet had been a pantry for our kitchen. The lonely can of peaches must have been left behind in the transition. What shocked us was that the can of peaches wasn't yet past its expiration date!

I remember those peaches sometimes when I follow up with leaders after we've asked them to contact someone who expressed interest in the ministry they lead. Most leaders follow up promptly. Some leaders, however take 3-4 weeks to make the contact. Or they send one email and that's it. Or, if the ministry is seasonal, like lawn cutting, they say, "I'll give him a call when we're ready to start."

It's as if volunteers were canned peaches. You could put them on a shelf and when you come back to them, months later, they'll be ready to go.

But people are more like fresh lettuce. You know how it is with lettuce . . .
Continue this article

 Good Stuff on the Web
"When Volunteers Resist Change," a 'hot topic' from Energize, Inc., is a great discussion on dealing with "unreasonable resistance" from volunteers. The solution: focus on "mission first, enjoyment second." Interesting that a focus on mission applies to volunteers outside the church as well as within. Read the article here
 Webinar Coming Soon
I'll be leading a webinar (a seminar on the internet) on "Effective Volunteer Recruitment" for Wheat Ridge Ministries on Feb. 22, 2011. Registration information will be on their website,, in mid-January; or email for more info.
 Blogs and FYI
  1.  Recent blogs I've written for CTA:
  2. FYI #1, there was no Equipper newsletter in December 2010. We're still aiming to publish this newsletter once a month, but newsletter time sometimes must go to family priorities. Thanks for understanding.
  3. FYI #2, the store at is temporarily closed for updates.

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The Equipper Newsletter published monthly by
Karen Kogler, Equipper Church Volunteerism Resources