What is the role of the Sabbatical Support Team (SST)? #
Those on sabbatical should disengage completely from leadership and ministry responsibilities, but this doesn’t mean isolation or lack of fellowship. The SST provides a community to journey with staff through their sabbatical. We suggest the SST (including the Sabbatical Advisor) meet with the person(s) on sabbatical every month or so as a group, so the synergy of the group benefits them.
How is a Sabbatical Support Team chosen? #
Someone taking a sabbatical may experience lack of community, loss of perspective, and a sense of isolation. While we all need times alone, we live and minister in community. To meet this need for community, everyone on sabbatical is encouraged to establish a Sabbatical Support Team. Ideally, this group consists of 3-10 people (both Navigator and non-Navigator where possible) with whom they have a safe relationship. This group meets with them each month to help process their journey in a safe environment. The person(s) on sabbatical facilitate the meetings, sharing first their current progress and then asking for input. (It is expected and desirable that the Sabbatical Advisor will participate in the group.) Ideally, people on the SST should meet the following criteria:
- Have the person’s best interest at heart.
- Be willing to speak truth to them.
- The person(s) are willing to be transparent and vulnerable with you. (Transparent: open and honest about themselves. Vulnerable: invite others to speak into their life.)
- The team should be willing to meet monthly for the duration of the sabbatical.
What is the role of the Sabbatical Advisor? #
The Sabbatical Advisor’s primary role is to shepherd the person(s) on sabbatical through the phases of their sabbatical. Each advisor brings their strengths to the relationship. We suggest the person(s) on sabbatical meet with their Sabbatical Advisor every couple of weeks so they can keep a finger on the pulse of their progress through their sabbatical.
Should their supervisor be on their Sabbatical Support Team? #
That depends on the person(s)’ relationship with their supervisor. If they have a relationship that allows them to share their heart and their supervisor can focus on what is best for them regardless of impact on the ministry, then great.