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The Board Vision, Part 1
By Peter              CM/FM 3352 5/01

Round of commendation       2
Why boards, anyway?       4
These GNs and the Family Board Handbook       6
Continental, regional, and national areas       7
The six main pillars of Family life       7
Your area's national boards       9
Makeup of the regional boards       9
What about continental boards?       10
Who sits on the international boards?       11
What will these boards do?       12
How the national, regional, and international boards
interact       15
Boards working toget her       16
International boards meet with WS       17
International boards suggest worldwide policy to WS       19
Clear pipeline for communicating ideas, problems
and solutions       19
National, regional, and continental councils       21
Limitations of authority       22
Vetoes and appeals       23
The boards can propel us forward       24

Dear Family,
       1. God bless you! Mama and I love you so much. We're very proud of you for the wonderful job you do as you constantly pour out the Lord's love through preaching the Gospel, co mforting the needy, helping the poor, uplifting the downtrodden, and ministering the Word--all the things that Jesus Himself did. You're a Family to be proud of!

Round of Commendation

       2.Recently when speaking about you, the Family at large, the Lord had the following encouraging words to say:

       3.(Jesus speaking:) My dear Family, My world­wide brides and called-out ones, are doing a marvelous job! They live to serve Me. They give their hearts and souls to Me, and seek Me daily to receiv e My leading and guidance, to find out what I want them to do. They are truly the called-out ones of the End who hunger and thirst after My righteousness, My Words, My new truths, and My commands. They long to hear My voice telling them which way to walk. They set aside their own desires, plans, opinions, and preferences, and do My bidding gladly.
       4.I have such great love, such joy, such admiration for these who have given their lives to My service! Nowhere else in the world have I found a gr oup of followers so dedicated and so committed to staying close to Me and following Me step by step, trusting that I will lead them along, even if the future still seems a little hazy or unclear. Because of this great faith that My beloved Family has manifested, I will greatly reward them!
       5.I'm bringing My Family into a time of great fruitfulness, excitement, and change! There will be changes and moves of the Spirit which will propel the Family forward. The Family will begin to see more tang ible proof of all they've given up for Me, all their obedience, all the love they've shown, and all the sowing of seed and watering that they've done day after day, month after month, year ­after year.
       6.Though many Family members look back on the years they've spent in My service, laboring on the fields, and think they've had few results, that is not the case. So they should not be discouraged or feel that their lives have availed little. Each Family member has made a tremendous difference i n the world. Each one, no matter how small or how infrequently they feel they have the opportunity to witness, to win a soul, to change someone's life, to do something big that will really affect the history of mankind and the world as they see it, has made a lasting difference. I promise you this. I see it. I know it. And I will reward you for it.
       7.When I gather all of you, My Endtime Family, to My arms in Heaven, then I will bring you all to a specially prepared auditorium, and I will show you then and there how your presence on Earth--individually and collectively as a Family--has changed the world. Then you will see all the little things that escape your eyes now. The discouragement will vanish. The tears will be wiped away, never to return. You'll see tangible proof of how your labors went before you, changing hearts and lives and giving ­others a chance to receive or to reject. You'll see that you have done the job, that you've been faithful, and that I'm so pleased with you.
       8.I see the future and I know that you will complete the job to the end. I'm counting on you. And to help you achieve the most you can achieve, I'm stirring up the pot and putting changes in your path--the most notable change being the Activated vision, which is your future. A change that goes hand in hand with Activated is the structure that will enable you to properly care for all the souls, new Family members, and disciples that you'll win. They will come, and you'll need a solid and reli able mech­anism with which to care for them. Part of this mechanism is the board vision, as it will strengthen the Family overall and distribute the load.
       9.So look forward to these changes with excitement and anticipation, because this is the start of a great and mighty reaping! All the ­labors and love which you have so willingly given and poured out until this time will hardly compare with what I will be able to do through you in the future--the future which is soon to be upon you! So take heart! Rejoice! Don't let the Enemy in with discouragement and lies. Don't believe for one moment that your life hasn't counted, that the hours you've spent witnessing, taking care of children, living communally, and obeying what I've asked of you day by day, hasn't counted. It has--more than you know!
       10.I'm so proud of you, My wonderful Family! It thrills My heart to see you continuing to follow Me, serve Me, love Me, and obey Me. The best is just around the corner, and the best of all bes ts is not too far away either--in My Heavenly Kingdom, in My arms--where you'll finally receive all the rewards, satisfaction, credit, fulfillment, joy, love and glory that's coming to you, each and every Family member! (End of message from Jesus.)

       11.(Peter:) Doesn't that make you feel good? Doesn't that make you feel that you've given your life to a worthy cause--the cause of Jesus, our wonderful Husband? Isn't it wonderful to see how He sees your many labors of love, and how though we're a relatively small group, we've had such a tremendous impact on the world for good? We've personally preached the Gospel to over 135 million people and have won almost 25 million souls to the Lord. We may not have a big following, we may not be a big church, but we have big results--results that are eternal!
       12.We're so proud of you and are so thankful for each one of you, and for the wonderful job that you do to help reach the world and make the Family what it is today. And that's what we w ant to talk about in this GN--your part in helping the Family to be what it needs to be in the future.
       13.Over the past eight months, we've been keeping you updated on the upcoming changes which are in the works, specifically the setting up of boards throughout the Family. In "That Banana There" (ML #3313, GN 917, published in November 2000), we presented the general idea and vision for the board structure. Since that time we've held further meetings with the CROs and others, during which we discussed, debated, prayed about and finalized much of the board structure plan. Since that time, our WS administration team has been working on finalizing the board structure and putting it on paper so that when it goes into effect, all the necessary procedures will be outlined and in place. We are now ready to present this plan to you in detail, beginning in this GN and continuing in the next one. (If you come across something in this GN you don't understand, it may be explained later in this GN, or in the next one.)

Why Boards, Anyway?

       14.Perhaps the first question is: "Why do we need to change things? Can't things just carry on as they are?"
       15.The answer to that is quite simply, "No." Things cannot carry on the way that they are--not if we're going to make progress and move forward in the way the Lord wants us to. The Lord wants change. He wants us to grow. He wants us to expand, but we have basically reached our limits in our present methods and modes of operation. If we try to keep our present leadership structure, any future growth will be hampered; therefore it must change.
       16. The sooner our leadership structure changes, the sooner the Lord will be able to help us grow and expand in the way He wishes. The Lord knows that adding too much more at this time might cause our leadership structure to collapse entirely, as in the leadership realm of the Family there are too few trying to do too much, and adding any more on would just make the situation worse. Our leadership structure needs to be remodeled to fit the needs of today.

       17.In looking for the leadership structure that will meet today's needs, the Lord led us to the principles of the past, namely those of the first disciples in the Book of Acts. When Jesus' twelve disciples were faced with the growing demand of leadership, the Lord showed them to seek out "men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom" who they could appoint over the business (Acts 6:3).
       18.The Acts plan of s preading the load on more shoulders allowed the shepherds to focus on the job the Lord had called them to do, giving them­selves continually to prayer and the ministry of the Word. It made it possible for the Lord to raise up "men of honest report" to do the jobs that they were qualified to do.
       19.This accomplished two major things. For one, it relieved those with the ministry of spiritually leading the church from having to get involved in ministries which weren't meant to be their responsi­ bility. They could then focus on the responsi­bilities that their ministry required without all the distractions of the day-to-day running of the church. At the same time, and perhaps more importantly, it raised up other qualified people into positions where their gifts and callings and abilities could be used, thus strengthening the overall leadership structure of the church. These are two very important goals that we, as the Family, need to reach as well.
       20.As explained in "That Banana The re," our CROs and VSs are extremely overloaded. They have huge workloads and bear a tremendous amount of pressure. As the Family continues to grow, not only in numbers but in diversity and complexity, it's becoming increasingly difficult for the CROs and VSs to keep up with the workload, do a good job, and minister to you, the Family, as they should. It's too much to expect from them, and they need to be relieved from a great deal of their all-encompassing work so that they can focus on the mini stries that they are particularly gifted in. They need to give up a good deal of their work, their responsibilities, and their authority, so that they can be freed to focus on the main ministries the Lord has called them to perform, which for some will be spiritually shepherding the Family, and for others it will be focusing on one or two specific aspects of Family life, like young people, FED, etc.
       21. At the same time, we desperately need to tap into the tremendous pool of talented Family me mbers to help in the various ministries of the Family. Every Family member has experience, talent, gifts, and wisdom in their particular area of expertise, and we need to restructure ourselves so that this talent can be tapped into in order to benefit the local area and the overall Family. Basically, we need to follow the Lord's admonition to "Look ye out among you men [and women] of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business"--those who are gifted i n certain ministries--and encourage them to participate more in helping the Family to grow within those ministries.
       22.Folks, there is so much to do that we can't continue the way we have been. We have to change. We have to accommodate the new vision of expanding our church, the Activated ministry, following up on people, doing what we do best in teaching discipleship and building a solid foundation of believers and members who will help us to reach the world with the Gospel.
       23.In order t o achieve this, we have to broaden the leadership and ministry roles to many more people, as those who presently carry them are too few for the job. We need you to participate more. We need those who have specific gifts and talents to use those talents--not just for their own Home or their own children or their own young people or their own sheep, but for other Homes and others' children, and other young people and others' sheep. We need to seek out those of honest report--you who have specific gifts and talents that can benefit ­others--and find a way that those talents can be used to be a blessing to the Homes in your area, to the Homes in your continent, to the Homes through­out the world.
       24.You, our Family members--each of you--are the most valuable assets the Family has. We need to tap into those assets. We need to give you the means by which you can use your gifts to benefit others. And that is what the board structure--the revamping of our overall leadership structure--is me ant to accomplish.
       25.The goal is to lessen the load on the few and to share that load amongst the many. The goal is to help find solutions to the longstanding problems that we face. The goal is to take proactive measures to move us forward as a Family. The goal is to strengthen the Family backbone so that it will be able to support the added weight of our overall expanding body, and the resultant increased workload.
       26.We need more people who are concerned and focusing on the different as pects of our Family life, who are praying and asking the Lord's guidance and instructions to help us make progress, and who are involved in the decision-making at all levels. We need people who are willing to take responsibility and accountability. We need people who are willing to give more of themselves to serve others. We need people who are willing to help find and implement solutions to the problems we face.
       27.If we can share the load, if we can include many more of you in helping the F amily move forward, then we'll be in a position to take in more sheep, more followers, more believers, and more members, who can in turn reach multitudes more than we presently can. If we don't make these changes, we won't be able to expand or move into the future the Lord has for us. We have to make these changes now.

These GNs and
Family Board Handbook

       28.Explaining how the board structure is going to work so that everyone can clearly understand it is going to be quite an undertakin g. In these GNs, we want to give you the overall vision of how the boards are going to work--the makeup of the boards, what they do, and generally how they operate.
       29.In explaining this structure to you, we will have to explain it piece by piece so that you will understand the complete makeup of the new structure. Imagine that you're building a house. First you have to lay the foundation, then you put up various uprights for the support structure, lay the beams, then the walls go up, and the roof is put on at the end. That's similar to how we'll explain our new board structure. We will explain it piece by piece, starting with the main pillars, then the various crossbeams, etc. Hopefully when we're finished with the explanation, and as we even outline it for you visually, you'll understand the structure itself and why all the pieces are needed.
       30.You will have questions as you read along. Hopefully by the time you're finished reading this series of GNs, your questions will be an swered and you'll have a clear understanding of the board structure--what it's for and how it works. Some of these details might be a bit tech­nical and perhaps even boring. However, in order for you to have a good grasp of these changes that are being enacted, it's important that you carefully read these GNs so that you have this understanding and you can know what to expect from those who are on the boards, or what will be expected of you if you are on a board.
       31.Along with these GNs, we'r e sending you a copy of the FamilyBoard Handbook, which outlines the rules and procedures that those on the boards will need to follow. This handbook will be primarily technical, with all the rules and regulations for board members spelled out clearly, such as the responsibilities and realm of authority of the different boards and board members, procedures for voting, procedures for a higher board vetoing a decision made by a lower board, procedures for moving someone off a board if they're not doing a good job or for disciplinary reasons, how many times a year they have to meet, etc.
       32.The Family Board Handbook is the manual that those on the boards will use. This handbook will govern the boards, similar to how the Charter governs the Family members' rights and responsibilities. We're making this available for all to read so that you can have a more clear and in-depth understanding of the boards. However, the ones who will sit on the various boards are those who will need to full y understand all that is contained in the handbook.
       33.Before getting into this explanation, Mama and I would like to thank those in WS and the CROs, who over the last 15 months have put a great deal of work, time, prayer and counsel into bringing the board vision to reality. This monumental change could not have happened without their help, and we're very grateful to each and every one who participated and who will continue to participate in the implementa­tion stage. God bless you all for a job well done!
       34.We also want to point out that the imple­mentation of the board structure does not replace the Charter. The Charter, with all of its rights and responsibilities, remains intact. The board struc­ture has been designed to work alongside the Charter, not to replace it. The Charter is still the governing document of the Family. The Family Board Handbook is the document that outlines the rules, procedures and authority of the boards.

Continental, Regional,
And National Areas

       35.Our worldwide work is divided into five separate continental (CRO) areas. These five separate continental areas will remain intact. However, in order to better service the Homes, have more people involved in the structure and spread the load out, each one will be subdivided further into regional areas and national areas. It is necessary to make these divisions in order to make the board structure work, which you will understand as we continue to explain.
       36.Each continental area will b e divided into regions, as follows:

*       United States and Canada, including Puerto Rico and Jamaica
*       Mexico and Central America

*       Brazil
*       All the Spanish-speaking countries in South America, including the Dominican Republic, Cuba and the Caribbean

*       Western Europe
*       Eastern Europe, Russia and CIS
*       Africa

*       Mideast, Turkey, Pakistan, Egypt and ­Tunisia
*       India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh
*       Southeast Asia, Indonesia and Philippines

*       J apan and Korea
*       Taiwan, China, Australia, New Zealand, Tahiti and other countries of Oceania

       37.Each regional area will then be divided into national areas. Although we're calling these "national" areas, they are not necessarily divided along national lines. While some are, most national areas are based upon the number of Homes in a certain area within a region.
       38.For example, the region of Western Europe may be divided into two national areas--Northern Europe and Southern Europe--but there may be five or six or more actual countries within each of those national areas. The region of Brazil, on the other hand, may also be div­ided into several national areas, even though it's just one country. Each regional area will be made up of at least two national areas. Every Home in the world will belong to a national area, and your national area, combined with one or more other national areas, will constitute a regional area. Two or more regional areas will be combined to form a cont inental area.

The Six Main Pillars of Family Life

       39.In building the board structure, we first set out to define the major aspects of the overall Family, the areas that affect every single Family Home. We defined six of these areas, which are:

*       The spiritual care and upbringing of our children, ages 0-11.
*       The care and shepherding of our JETTs and teens, ages 12-17.
*       The education of our children and teens.
*       Witnessing, outreach and follow-up (cover­ing all of our witnessing, dis ciple winning and training, follow-up, tool distribution, church growth, CTPs, the Activated program, and reaching the world with the Gospel).
*       Shepherding and visitation (spiritual shep­herding of the Homes and Family members).
*       Public relations (media matters, relations with the press, legal matters involving foundations, NGOs or organizations that represent Family Homes, persecution response, exploring ways to promote the Family's good name and good works).

       40.There are, of course, o ther aspects of the Family and other important ministries, but we felt that these six points were the main pillars that need to be focused on for the Family to prosper and grow, while at the same time caring for the needs of all ages within the Family.
       41.These are the main pillars within the board structure, and we've officially titled these pillars as follows:

Children and Parenting
Family Education Department
Church Growth and Outreach
Visitation and Shepherding
Public Relations

       42.These pillars cover the main aspects of Family life, and are the vertical pillars within the structure. The bottom section of these pillars will be the national boards. The middle section of these pillars will be the regional boards, and the top section of each pillar will be the international boards.
       43.As explained above, we have divided our five continental (CRO) areas into 12 regions, and we have divided our regions into national areas. We h ave taken the six basic aspects of the Family and have called these the pillars, and each of these pillars contains national boards, regional boards, and international boards.
       44.Now let's take a look at how these boards will be represented on a national level. (The Public Relations pillar is a bit different than the others in that it will only be represented by regional and international boards, not national boards. More on this later.)

Your Area's National Boards

       45.Under this structu re, each national area will have its own national Children and Parenting board, a national JETT/Teen board, a national FED board, a national Church Growth and Outreach board, and a national Visitation and Shepherding board.
       46.Family members from Homes in that national area will sit on these national boards. Some of you in the national area who are gifted in childcare and in parenting might sit on the Children and Parenting board. Some of you who are gifted in working with young people would sit on the JETT/Teen board. Some of you who are gifted in teaching and education might sit on the national FED board. Those particularly gifted in outreach, follow-up, winning and teaching disciples, etc., might sit on the Church Growth and Outreach board. The local visiting servants (VSs) would sit on the VS board.
       47.Board members will come from every sphere of Family life. There will be moms and dads, teachers, outreachers, Home shepherds, JETT and teen shepherds, and those gifted in these particular ministries. Board members will come from both generations, with the minimum age being 18.
       48.Each national board will have a minimum of three people. In many cases, it will be more than three people, but three will be the minimum. This means that each national area will have the five boards outlined above, and each of those boards will have a minimum of three people sitting on it, who are focusing and thinking about the responsibilities of their board and the needs of their nation al area.
       49.One member of each national board will be the chairperson of that board, appointed by the Continental Council. He or she will be responsible for handling the day-to-day business and communications of that board. More on the Continental Council and the responsibilities of the chairperson later.

Makeup of the Regional Boards

       50.A regional board would be made up of the chairpersons of each of the national boards below it. In addition, the Continental Council will appoint anothe r member to each regional board who would be the chairperson of that board. In most, but not all cases, the regional board chairperson will be a Continental Officer (one of the present-day CROs) who is gifted in that particular ministry or aspect of the Family. The Continental Council has the option of appointing other members to the regional board as well. (More on this point later in the series.)
       51.For example, if there are three people on the national Children and Parenting board, one of them would be the chairperson. That chair­person would auto­matically be a member of the regional Children and Parenting board. Thus, the members of the regional Children and Parenting board consist of the chairpersons of the national Children and Parenting boards within that region, plus the chairperson of the regional board who is appointed by the Continental Council.
       52.Let's look at a region that is divided into three national areas. National area #1 would have five national boards: Child ren and Parent­ing, FED, JETT/Teen, Church Growth and Outreach, and VS. National area #2 would also have national boards for each of those same pillars, as would national area #3.
       53.The chairpersons of the national Children and Parenting boards from national ­areas 1, 2 and 3 would sit together on the regional Children and Parenting board, along with a chairperson appointed by the Continental Council (in many cases, but not all, a Continental Officer). Likewise, the chairpersons of the natio nal JETT/Teen boards from national areas 1, 2 and 3 would sit together on the regional JETT/Teen board along with a regional board chairperson. The same with the other boards.
       54.So at the regional level, each of the ­pillars has a regional board, made up of the chairpersons of the national boards of that pillar, plus a chairperson (and in some cases additional mem­bers appointed by the Continental Council).
       55.As mentioned earlier, the Public Relations pillar will not initially be represe nted at the national level; when there is no national PR representation, the PR board will consist of a regional board with members appointed by the Continental Council, going up to the international board.

What About Continental Boards?

       56.You might have noticed that we talked about national and regional boards, but no continental boards. Originally the plan called for national boards, continental boards, and international boards. However, after prayer and discussion with the CROs, the Lo rd showed us that having boards at the continental level would give each board too vast an area to try to properly oversee or assist the Homes.
       57.For example, if we had continental boards instead of regional boards, then a continental Church Growth and Outreach board for the whole EURCRO area would be responsible for overseeing and assisting outreach and witnessing efforts in Western Europe, Russia, the EE, and Africa. Not only does that encompass over 200 CM Homes, but it also spans a wide range of situations, cultures and language ­areas that are completely different one from another. The needs, methods, problems and solutions for Africa might be completely different than those of Russia, yet the same team would have to be thinking of both. Whereas if a Church Growth and Outreach board only had to concentrate on Africa, it would be able to service the Homes in Africa much better. The board members themselves would all live in Africa and be more in tune with the needs of Africa, w hereas they might not have much to contribute if they had to help the Homes in Russia as well.
       58.One of the goals of the board vision is to spread the load onto more shoulders. Having more regional boards, each responsible for a smaller area, rather than fewer continental boards, helps to accomplish this.
       59.Since we have regional boards, there was no need to have continental boards, as that would make too many levels (national, regional, continental, international). So instead we opted f or just three levels--national, regional, and international.
       60.As mentioned, we will still retain the current CRO offices and CRO areas. The current CRO teamworks will act as a Continental Council, and their role is explained later. The CROs themselves will be chairpersons of many of the regional boards, which means each CRO will be more focused on a certain region and therefore better able to give the Homes in that region their attention, rather than having to try to care for the whole cont inent.

Who Sits on the
International Boards?

       61.As explained earlier, each regional area will have a regional board for each of the six pillars. If all of the regional chairpersons sat on the international board for that pillar, with about 12 regions that would make the international board fairly unwieldy. It would also make it very expensive for that board to meet with all its members. So within each continental area, only one of the chairpersons of the regional boards will be chosen as a member of the international board of that particular pillar.
       62.For example, EURCRO will be divided into three regions. That means that within the EURCRO continental area there are three regional Children and Parenting boards, one for Western Europe, another for Russia/EE, and another for Africa. Each of those three regional boards has a chairperson. Only one of those regional Children and Parenting board chairpersons will be appointed to the international Children and Parenting board. That person will be responsible to not only represent their own region but also the other regions by getting input from their fellow regional chairpersons.
       63.The international board's responsibility will be to focus on their ministry on a Family-wide basis. They will pray about how to move their ministry forward on an international level, by requesting WS to produce publications which will target topics that need to be addressed, and by formulating and recom­mending Family policy in regards to t heir ministry. This is quite different than the job of those on the national and regional boards, who will be more involved in their ministries at the Home or area level. Because of this difference, we feel that having one regional board chairperson represent the continental area is sufficient.
       64.Let's imagine that the chairperson of the regional Children and Parenting board for Russia/EE is the one appointed to sit on the international Children and Parenting board. That person would represe nt not only Russia and Eastern Europe at the international level, but also Western Europe and Africa. He or she would be responsible for getting input from the regional chairpersons for the Children and Parenting boards of Western Europe and Africa in order to be able to properly represent them on the international Children and Parenting board.
       65.This means that the international Children and Parenting board will consist of one regional chairperson from each of the five continental areas. Th us, the international Children and Parenting board will have five members, plus an appointed international board chairperson who will in most but not all cases be a member of World Services, as well as perhaps some other WS members.
       66.So the general way that it works is that every national area will have one board for each pillar, each board consisting of people from that national area who are gifted in that particular ministry. The chairpersons of those national boards will sit on the regio nal board, along with an appointed regional chairperson. Each continental area will send one of their regional board chairpersons to the international board of that particular ministry.
       67.All of this ensures that each of the pillars is represented at the national level, the regional level, and the international level. These are the vertical pillars within the board structure. Each pillar starts at the national level, goes up to the regional level, and then rises to the international level. T hese are the vertical pillars holding up the Family structure. There are also some horizontal crossbeams within this structure, but before we talk about those, let's talk more about the boards themselves.

What Will These Boards Do?

       68.Hearing all about the actual structure with­out understanding what the members of these boards are supposed to do could be rather discon­cert­ing. So let's explore in general terms the functions of the boards; the specifics will come later within this series.
       69.The basic idea behind the boards is to find those who are gifted within each of these particular pillars/ministries, and use their expertise, or the talents and anointing the Lord has given them, to serve the Family. You probably know someone(s) in your country or area who is particularly gifted in childcare, education, working with young people, follow-up or outreach. These folks may or may not be very good people-handlers or shepherding types, but one thing is certain: they're gifted in their particular ministry. Today, their gifts are most likely limited to their particular Home, or if their city has a functioning and active City Council, maybe they are able to benefit the small circle of Homes around them.
       70.Under the board structure, such a person could sit on the national board for the pillar that they're best suited for. That person would be in phone and e-mail communication with, as well as meet on a regular basis (at least once every few months), together with other board members from their national area who are also gifted in that particular ministry.
       71.If this person, for example, sits on the Children and Parenting board, when he or she communicates with or meets with the other members of the national Children and Parenting board, they would discuss the needs of the children and parents in their national area. They may discover that there are a number of young ­mothers in their national area who need help and counsel regarding baby care, and they may agree that that is a topic that needs to be addressed.
       72.As the national board, they might pray about and discuss the possibility of holding a seminar for new mothers. They could put together a two-day seminar and invite the new moms from their area to come together and give them classes on baby care, etc. Or they might invite other experienced mothers to come help give some classes or work­shops. By discussing the needs of their area and praying about ideas and ways to help meet the needs, the national Children and Parenting board would be directly benefiting their area, within their particular ministry.
       73.As another example, the members of the national JETT/Teen board might realize that a number of the young people in their area have a common problem of being bored. Therefore they would pray about the situation and seek the Lord for something that they could do to help alleviate the problem. Perhaps the Lord would show them that organizing weekend get-togethers once a month with as many of the young people as can attend from the area for united inspiration and a witnessing excursion would help to alleviate some of the teens' boredom. They could plan it out and confer with the Homes; if there is agreement from the Homes in the area, the plan could be instituted on the national level. In some cases, where a national area consists of a number of countries and it is not possible for the young people of the area to go out together, the board might recommend that each ci ty which has a substantial number of young people try to hold a monthly witnessing excursion for their youth.
       74.The idea is to get the people together who are gifted in a particular ministry and give them the responsibility to think about, discuss, and pray about the needs of that particular ministry within their national area. As it stands today, the CROs and VSs are only able to focus their attention on the most pressing matters at hand--the daily emergencies. We've lacked people in positi ons of responsibility who could focus their time and energy on just one aspect of our Family life, and we hope that this board structure will allow for this focus.
       75.Presently if the young people in an area are bored, it's basically up to the Home itself to figure out what to do about it, or a few Homes in an area which band together to tackle the problem. For the most part there is very little help provided from outside their Home. If a VS ­happens to visit and is attuned to young people, h e may have some good counsel to give the Home. But in most cases, the VSs only come around once in a great while, and the rest of the time that Home is faced with trying to solve that problem more or less on their own. If there's nobody in the Home who is particularly gifted in working with or inspiring young people, then the young people will most likely continue to be bored. The VSs and CROs do try to organize things for the young people in their areas, but with their time being divided betwee n so many facets of Family life, they are very limited in what they can do.
       76.The Home may want to change the situation and may be seeking the Lord for solutions to their young people's boredom. They may even write their CROs to ask for help and counsel. The problem is that the CROs aren't in a position to focus so much on an individual Home and its needs. The CROs have to be concerned not only with the young people, but with the education of our children, the childcare set-up, the overall o utreach and Activated progress, the NPC, the Office, the SC, a myriad of business details, and all the rest! So under our present system, it's very difficult for that Home seeking solutions for their young people to get the help that it needs.
       77.It is our hope that with the board structure in place,when a problem like this arises, those on the national board will be able to tune into it, pray about it, communicate with the Homes about it, make suggestions to the Homes for possible solutions and assist in any way they can.
       78.Naturally, the boards will be limited in what they can do, as being a board member will not be their full-time job, finances for the boards will be extremely limited, and logistically it won't be possible to give each Home in a national area the exact same services. The services the boards are able to provide may vary from area to area or city to city. If the national area consists of a large number of Homes that are geographically close together and one or two which are a great distance away, then the Homes that are far away might receive less services than the nearby Homes, since, for example, they won't be able to afford to send their young people a long distance each month to attend a witnessing excursion. On the other hand, the national board might give the distant Homes a different service such as writing them much more often than they would the Homes which are close by.
       79.It's important to realize right from the start that the boards ar e not going to solve ­every individual Home's problems, nor are they responsible to solve the problems; they're just responsible to be of service to the Homes in that particular sphere of Family life. However, in this case, the national JETT/Teen board, when discussing and praying about their area, might be able to find a solution that not only helps one individual Home to alleviate the problem with their young people being bored, but other Homes as well.
       80.National board members are meant t o be people who are gifted in that specific ministry. These people should be thinking and praying about that ministry in relation to the specific Homes in their national area. These national board members live in that national area and they're in a better position than the CROs to offer some sort of service or counsel to the Homes in regards to that ministry, and to pioneer local initiatives within that ministry.
       81.What we're hoping and praying for with the implementation of the board vision is that there will be people in your national area who will be praying and thinking about the young people in your national area. Other Family members within your national area will be thinking, praying, and seeking the Lord for solutions and ideas concerning the education of the children in your national area. Similarly, there will be people who are focused on the national area's outreach programs, who are thinking about it and discussing it with other like-minded people, and who are trying to find ways to help the Homes advance in Activated and outreach.
       82.Of course, these board members will have other responsibilities as Home members, and the board won't be their full-time job. However, between them they will be thinking and praying and trying to do what they can to help the Family in their respective spheres of responsibility.
       83.National board members will meet ­every few months for discussion and prayer. They will most likely communicate with each other in between their m eetings, but they will only officially be required to meet every three months or so. It is during these meetings that they will pray about and discuss their ministry, and make decisions as to what they feel they can do to help the Homes in their national area. In some instances this will be the extent of their involvement; in other cases they will get more involved and will put more time into it. For example, if a national board meeting is held at the beginning of the winter months, they may pr ay about and discuss problems, solutions and ideas. However, during the course of their meeting they may decide that no new programs or initiatives will be undertaken for the next three months because it's difficult to do so in the winter. So for the next three months the board members might not have many board ­duties. Whereas if they meet right before summer, they may suggest holding a seminar during the summer months, which would necessitate their putting more time into their duties, preparin g and planning for the seminar.
       84.The chairperson of the national board will have more work than the other members of the board, as he or she will be the one communicating with the other board members and will be responsible for more of the business of the board. The chairperson will probably play a larger role in helping to implement the decisions of the board.
       85.We are looking for people who are gifted in any one of these pillars, who have a burden for that particular ministry or age g roup, who can help to offer related services to the Homes in their national area. We need people who will be thinking, praying, discussing, and seeking the Lord for answers to the problems, for ways to move forward. We need people who have the faith and vision to act and be part of the solution, rather than waiting for solutions to come from WS or from the CROs. We need people who are willing to sacrifice their own time to help bear the responsi­bility for these vital pillars of Family life and help move the Family forward.
       86.Are you willing?

How the National, Regional, and
International Boards Interact

       87.Let's look at the JETT/Teen board in a regional area that is divided into three national areas. The chairpersons of the three national JETT/Teen boards will sit together on the regional JETT/Teen board, along with the chairperson of the regional board (and in some cases other members appointed by the Continental Council). This gives the regional JETT/Teen board a chance to discuss and pray about the collective needs of the young people in their entire region.
       88.When the regional JETT/Teen board meeting is held, each member is not focusing solely on their national area, but is also looking at the collective needs of the region. They have the benefit of hearing what the other chairpersons are experiencing, the problems and difficulties that they're coming up against, and the solutions that they've found. They can and should put their heads together to pray abou t what they can do on a regional level to help, for example, the young people. In some situations, it may be difficult for the national area to solve a problem, but by counseling together at the regional level, some sort of program or initiative could be more easily offered that would benefit the regional area. Or another national area might be able to assist in some way; for example, by providing personnel for a camp for the young people, etc.
       89.The regional board is responsible to discuss their board's ministries from a regional point of view. The national chairpersons then return to their national boards and share with the other board members what's happening on a regional level, and what's going on in the other national areas. The national boards can then pray and discuss the points that were put forth at the regional level, to see what can be implemented in their national area, or in certain parts of their national area.
       90.The point is that you'll have national board membe rs praying about and discussing the ministry; some of those will go up to the regional board, where the regional board members will be thinking and praying about that same ministry; and one regional board chairperson from each continental area will go up to the international board, where there will be representatives from each of the five continental areas. They will sit together with someone(s) in WS and collectively they will all be thinking and praying about and discussing that particular min istry.
       91. So all over the world, at each national level, regional level, and the international level, you have groups of people discussing and praying about their particular pillar. Every national, regional, and international board will be discussing, praying, and counseling, and the Lord will be showing them solutions related to their pillar. The national boards will be seeking the Lord for national needs and problems. The regional boards will look for ways to benefit the region. The interna tional boards will be garnering ideas, counsel, tips and pub ideas for the Homes worldwide, in each respective pillar. Each level will be doing what they can to help solve problems, to offer services, to make recommendations, to make policy or publications recommendations, and to help in any way they can.

Boards Working Together

       92.While the board pillars will operate inde­pend­ently from each other, in the sense that the Church Growth and Outreach board won't be meddling in the affairs of the Children and Parent­ing board, and vice versa, they'll also need to work together. In order for one pillar to make progress, they may need assistance from another pillar. For example, let's say that the JETT/Teen board has determined that in order to help the teens in their national area get on fire for the Lord, they need more hands-on witnessing. So the JETT/Teen board might approach the Church Growth and Outreach board and request that they work together to create a regular youth outreac h ministry in their national area, which the young people can be largely involved in.
       93.As each of the boards begin to determine the most immediate needs of their areas, establish their priorities, and come up with plans and programs, there will no doubt be a fair bit of involvement from the other pillars. Daily Family life is a grand mixture of all of these pillars, and those on the boards will need to work together to not only advance their own programs and goals, but to give assistance to the other boards as well. Since each board will be focusing on their own pillar, it will take some effort on their part to remember that each pillar is import­ant and that each pillar will need to work together with the others for the good of the whole. The goal is to strengthen the Family collectively by focusing more attention on each of these pillars, but at the same time, we must remain one Family and one body, fitly joined together and advancing together on all fronts.

International Boa rds
Meet with WS

       94.Another key to the board structure is that it will provide an avenue which good ideas, solutions to problems, and programs that could potentially benefit other areas can pass through. It also will provide WS with a clearer under­stand­ing of what issues each pillar feels needs to be addressed for the whole Family. I'll explain.
       95.Each pillar goes from the national level to the regional level and finally to the international level; this is the juncture where the boards meet with WS. The international boards, each of which will have some WS members sitting on them, will be able to ask WS to publish certain publications to help target various needs within their pillar. Those members of WS who sit on the international boards will then carry these recommendations back to WS and, in many cases, will be the ones who will help do the work on these publications. Their being part of the international board will give them firsthand knowledge of the needs of that partic ular pillar, which will help them when composing and designing the needed pubs for the Family.
       96.Let's look at the Children and Parent­ing board for a minute. At the national level, the Children and Parenting board may pass up to the regional level their suggestion for a certain topic to be addressed in a pub for both children and parents. At the regional level, the members of the board could discuss this sug­gestion, and would be able to see whether the other national areas feel this reques t would benefit the parents and children in their areas too, as well as pray about and discuss any modifications or additions to the suggestion. If it is deemed worthwhile, then the recom­mendation would be passed to the international Children and Parenting board.
       97.The international Children and Parent­ing board has the benefit of each continental area being represented. As those members meet or com­municate together, they'll bring all the input and recom­menda­tions for pubs on certain top ics, and together they can discuss and prayer­fully consider which topics are most needed all around the world. The international Children and Parenting board would then tell WS, "This is what we need. We need pubs that address these main topics." WS can then prepare pubs which will meet the problems and needs of the whole Family more specifically--in this case, in regards to childcare and parenting.
       98.Looking at the Church Growth and Outreach board, there will be gifted follow-up and outrea ch people at the national level sitting on the board, discussing and praying about outreach in their area, and exploring what they can do to make it more fruitful. They'll be asking themselves, "How can we reach more people? How can we win more souls? How can we encourage more follow-up? How can we get more people activated?" They will be thinking about these things. They will be praying about them. They will be suggesting ideas to the local Homes. Perhaps they will be hosting or putting togethe r witnessing workshops or local Church of Love meetings, or any other idea the Lord shows them.
       99.These things will be taking place at the national level--enacted by those who live in the national area, without having to wait for an initiative to come from the CROs or VSs, or from WS. People on the national level will be responsible to pray about these matters, think about these matters, and work together with others at the national level to solve these problems, or to make progress within t heir particular pillar.
       100.This is then carried on up the line, be­cause the chairpersons of the national boards will go to the regional boards, and you'll have regional outreach people thinking about outreach for their particular region, and what they can do to make it more effective, etc. They'll be asking themselves, "How can Activated become more fruitful in our area? How can the Homes get more subscriptions? What is hindering our Homes from pushing the Activated ministry? What classes c an be given? What workshops or activities can be held? What counsel can be given to make our region's outreach and Activated vision progress? What new tools can we suggest be produced for our area? How can we better distribute the tools? How can we better train new disciples so they are well grounded in the Word?"
       101.From that meeting, one member repre­senting the regions' Church Growth and Outreach boards will go to the international Church Growth and Outreach board, where the international board will be praying about and discussing the same things: "How can we perform better outreach throughout the world? How can Activated be better promoted? What pubs need to be put out to encourage the Family to do more? What instruction can be given from WS to Family Homes worldwide concerning church growth and outreach? What new tools can the GP Production board produce?"
       102.This type of information will be making its way up each respective pillar. It will culminate at the international l evel, which will result in WS being more informed about the needs of each pillar. Since there are six pillars, each of which will be requesting publications and material from WS on their respective needs, WS probably won't be able to meet every single request. But WS will do its best to provide each pillar with their priority requests for pubs and other WS-related services. As your WS servants, we're looking forward to receiving more input from all levels, as we feel it will keep us better in to uch with the pulse of each field, and that we'll be hitting the mark more squarely in the pubs we put out and the needs that we address.

International Boards Suggest
Worldwide Policy to WS

       103.Another function of the international boards will be to suggest worldwide policy to Mama and me. They will not only state the types of pubs they feel that WS needs to produce to address the issues within their pillars, but they will also be able to recommend worldwide policy and programs within thei r ministry, when warranted. Mama and I and our counselors will then review the recommendations, hear from the Lord for confirmations, and make the final decisions.

Clear Pipeline for Communicating
Ideas, Problems and Solutions

       104.Once the boards are set up and func­tion­ing, your Home will not only benefit from the initiatives, counsel, or ideas that your national boards offer, but you will also know exactly who to get in touch with if you have an idea or seek a solution to a problem in regards to any one of the pillars.
       105.If you have an idea or question about your outreach or your local Church of Love--rather than writing your CRO, who may never have the time to give you a comprehensive answer, you could communicate directly with one of the members of your national Church Growth and Outreach board. It would then be their responsibility to bring up your question or idea at their next meeting, or to communicate about it via e-mail with the other board members. And if your i dea has merit, it could be carried to the regional board for discussion and prayer. If the regional board feels it's a good idea, they might pass it on to the international board, who could pass it on to WS, and it could eventually be presented to the entire Family or even become Family policy. (If it's something that just concerns your national area, it could be implemented locally if the national board agrees, without having to go all the way up to the international level.)
       106.By creating these upward pillars, from the national to the regional to the international level, we are creating a conduit through which your ideas can have a direct line from the national level to the international level. Ideas, comments, suggestions, questions and problems from the Home level can all be looked at by those who are gifted in that particular ministry--at the national level, the regional level, and the international level.

National, Regional,
And Continental Councils

       107.Now we'll move on to the various cross­beams in our board structure. Throughou

t the vertical structure there are three crossbeams:

*       The National Coordinating Council (NCC)
*       The Regional Council (RC)
*       The Continental Council (CC)

The National Coordinating Council (NCC)

       108.The National Coordinating Council con­sists of the chairperson of each of the national boards. That means in every national area, the National Coordinating Council would be made up of the chairpersons of the five pillars at the national level.
       109.The National Coordinating Council is not an authoritative body. National Coordinating Council members would not infringe on board matters or make any decisions that are the boards to make. The main purpose of this council is to keep each of the pillars informed of the other pillars' progress and plans, and to iron out any potential conflicts that may come up between the various national boards. For example, if the national FED board decides that throughout the months of Ju ly and August they would like to hold a series of educational seminars for the young people, and unbeknownst to them, the Church Growth and Outreach board is trying to encourage all Homes to coordinate united witnessing activities for their young people, majoring on witnessing and follow-up during this same time, there's a schedule conflict. So the National Coordinating Council members might agree to go back to their respective boards and discuss changing the dates or perhaps combining their sem inars and activities.
       110.The chairperson of every national board will need to keep the other national chairpersons abreast of what their board has in the works as far as activities, excursions, general meetings, etc. When there are these types of conflicts, the National Coordinating Council will need to discuss, pray, and see how to work things out so that confusing signals aren't being sent to the Homes. The National Coordinating Council meetings would also be a forum for the national board s in a national area to inform each other of what their board is doing, and thus help inspire unity and cooperation among the boards.
       111.The national boards have no authority over the Homes, but Homes could be confused if they're getting one set of suggestions from one board and another set of suggestions from another board.
       112.The National Coordinating Council will have no authority other than to sort out the conflicting schedules or associated problems amongst the national boards in th eir areas. They will not have any say over the Homes, or the decisions of any of the boards themselves. Their only mandate is to help the different pillars keep in touch with each other, working together smoothly, and to help resolve planning and scheduling conflicts.

The Regional Council (RC)

       113.At the regional level there is the Regional Council, which is made up of the chairpersons of all the regional boards. This Regional Council crossbeam straddles a whole regional area, which consis ts of at least two national ­areas. In the case of the Regional Council, some members, though not necessarily all, will be Continental Officers, as some regional chairpersons will be Continental Officers and some won't.
       114.Unlike the National Coordinating Council, the Regional Council will have more responsibility. Besides sorting out scheduling conflicts between the various regional boards, the Regional Council will also be responsible for the overall direction of the work within the region .
       115.When the Regional Council meets, they will look at the overall work within the regional area and discuss and pray about any and all aspects of the work that might need direction or guidance. This is similar to what the CROs presently do throughout their CRO area. When they meet in their CRO teamworks they look at the overall work, analyze it, pray about the needs of the area, and determine whether there are any aspects that need particular help.
       116.Until now, Mama and I have held th e present-day CROs responsible for the overall progress of their area. Under the new board structure, this responsibility will be pushed down to the Regional Council (who, as mentioned above, will mainly be made up of CROs along with newly appointed members). Since the Regional Councils will have smaller areas to oversee than our current CRO teamworks, hopefully they'll be able to give their regions more attention and care. Of course, the regions are still under the umbrella of the Continental C ouncil, whose responsibility it is to keep an eye on the overall continental area, as explained below.

The Continental Council (CC)

       117.The next crossbeam is the Continental Council. This crossbeam straddles all of the regions within a continental area. A CRO's official title according to the Charter is "Continental Officer." According to the Charter, the collective CROs of an area are called "the Continental Office." All of those who sit on the Continental Council will be Continental Offi cers (our present CROs). From this point on we would like to start using the Continental Officer title for the CROs, so in these GNs and all future publications we will use the term Continental Officers, or COs (pronounced see-oh) when referring to the CROs. We ask that you also please try to make the change in calling them COs instead of CROs. Thanks.
       118.The Continental Council will have the authority and the responsibility of the Continental Office as outlined in the Charter. The Charter a ssigns 15 major responsibilities and authority in 19 aspects of the work to the Continental Office. Within the board structure, the Continental Office will retain these same responsibilities and the same authority. In a general way they will be responsible for the spiritual health and the overall work of the continental area, and the services provided to the Family in that area that are administered on a continental level. However, the Regional Council will be the body that, for the most part, t unes into the direction of the work in the regional area.
       119.The Continental and Regional Councils will also play a role in helping to solve conflicts be­tween a national and a regional board, and between a regional and international board. We'll discuss that later in this GN series.

Limitations of Authority

       120.The Regional Council and the Continental Council do not have specific authority over the boards themselves. The Regional Council cannot dictate to the national or regional boar ds what decisions to make. The national, regional, and international boards are the ones responsible to offer services and help to the Homes within the realm of their pillar. The councils can help coordinate matters between pillars as well as help them work together, but the decision-making will remain with the boards.
       121.Our prayer is that those who will be on the national, regional, and international boards will be knowledgeable of these ministries and will be very prayerful in their delib erations. They will make decisions and offer suggestions to the Homes. They will start local initiatives. They will provide as much assistance as they're able to. The decisions that they make, they, as a board, are responsible for. They do not need to seek the permission of the councils before making a decision.
       122.So although the Regional Council and the Continental Council are responsible for the overall direction and spiritual health of either the region or the continent, they themselves do not have the authority to arbitrarily dictate to the boards how the boards should conduct themselves, what the board should discuss, and what decisions the board should make. The Regional Council and the Continental Council may make suggestions to the boards, but they would need to be discussed, prayed about, and agreed to by the individual boards before they can be enacted.

Vetoes and Appeals

       123.If a board makes a decision, and the board above it (within the same pillar) does not agre e with the decision, then the higher board would consult with the lower board. If they can't come to an agreement, then they would need a third body to review the matter and cast the deciding vote.
       124.For example, if the Children and Parenting national board for Thailand makes a decision that the Children and Parenting regional board for Southeast Asia does not agree with, the regional board would communicate with the national board as to why they felt that particular decision was not wise. If the national board agrees, then the national board would work to make the changes necessary to reverse or modify their decision. If the national board says, "No, we still feel it's a good decision, and we want to appeal your veto," then the matter would go to the Regional Council for Southeast Asia to decide.
       125.If a regional board makes a decision and the international board doesn't agree with it and they can't work it out together, then the regional board can appeal to the Continental C ouncil, who would cast the deciding vote.
       126.If the Regional Council hears that one of their regional boards has made a decision that they feel will be detrimental to the overall work, they can question the decision and try to work it out with the regional board. If it can't be worked out, then the Regional Council and the regional board would be in conflict, in which case the Regional Council would appeal the decision to the international board of the same pillar.
       127.The Lord showed us that it's necess­ary to have a system of checks and balances in place to protect the Homes from decisions that a board might make which might not be good decisions. On the other hand, we don't want to give the upper boards the authority to say that a lower board made a bad decision and therefore it can't be enacted. We felt the need to have a good appeal system whereby two bodies out of three agree, and thus there are various checks and balances throughout the board structure.
       128.These deta ils are a bit complicated and technical and somewhat difficult to explain. The procedures are clearly spelled out in legal­ese in the Family Board Hand­book, so if you want the specifics and the details, please look there. It would be too tedious to try to outline them in full within these GNs, and the little that we have already explained borders on being tedious. So if you want to fully understand the check and balance system, please read the Family Board Handbook.
       129.It is important for y ou to understand, though, that we have put checks and balances within this system to ensure that each board is a decision-making body that cannot be dictated to by other boards, yet at the same time can have their decisions questioned by a higher board if necessary. And if the two boards are not in agreement, there is a procedure to solve the problem or conflict.

The Boards Can
Propel Us Forward

       130.We believe that by having a large number of people throughout the world thinking and prayi ng about each of these pillars, and having a clearly defined line of where their ideas and suggestions should go--from the national level, to the regional level, to the international level--that the Lord will use it to help us to find the solutions that we need. Having this talent pool of individuals focusing on each pillar will also create new initiatives that are so necessary. It will also help WS to serve you better, because we'll be hearing directly from you through the boards as to what you r specific needs are, and what specific pubs or policies need to be created.
       131.But the best part is that right at the ground level, right there where you live in your national area, there will be people who are knowledgeable, gifted, and skilled in those ministries who are communicating, meeting together, thinking, discussing and praying about the needs of each pillar within your national area.
       132.It is our hope, prayer, burden and belief that by having people focus on a single pillar a t the national level, that many new ideas, initiatives and programs will blossom to benefit the Homes and Family members in each national area. And those programs and initiatives and ideas that are really good and that really work can then be used throughout the whole region, and once they reach the international boards, perhaps they can be spread throughout the whole world.
       133.It's time to spread the load. We can't expect or hope that WS can come up with all the ideas and the solutions to a ll the problems. It's unrealistic to think that the COs and VSs are going to be able to solve all the problems, figure out all the programs, and keep everyone moving forward within each of these pillars of our Family. Counsel, prayer, decision-making and prog­ress have to happen at the local level.
       134.To make this happen we need people who are gifted, who are willing to go the extra mile, do the extra work, get involved, sit on these national boards and think, pray, and discuss together, and to take the initiative to offer various services to the Homes within their pillars that will help and benefit their national area, or to give advice and counsel to the Homes who request it, within their realm of responsibility.
       135.If we can fill this board structure with people who have the needed gifts and the burden to work together, pray together, and to create services or programs for their national area, then we will be miles ahead, because the load and the burden of problem-solving an d raising the inspiration level will no longer fall on the shoulders of just a few, but will be spread out amongst the many. If we can achieve this, we will be in a much better position to move forward, to take bold new steps, and to go to the places the Lord wants to take us to. Our present leadership structure cannot carry this weight alone. It has to be distributed throughout these pillars and be borne on the shoulders of many. If we can do that, we believe the Lord will mightily anoint it an d help us to move forward like never before.
       136.Do you have a burden to help? Are you willing to give some of your time to helping on a board? Will you, as a Home, allow someone or ones from your Home to participate as board members? Do you have a talent in one of these pillar ministries which you can contribute? Will you volunteer? Do you know someone else who might be good on a board? If so, please write your COs today.
       137.Are you with us? Let's get on Board!