Unit Head’s Manual
COUPLES FOR CHRIST
UNIT HEAD’S MANUAL
A. THE UNIT
A unit in Couples for Christ (CFC) is a grouping of several households located within a certain geographical area. The unit is led by a Unit Head with household heads working under him.
A unit is set up by the Chapter Head as the need arises, usually due to an increase of membership in CFC.
The unit is established for the purpose of providing pastoral and administrative support to household heads. This is done so that they can exercise more effective leadership and care over the members of their household.
As such, a unit:
a. provides for the pastoral care not ordinarily available from household leaders;
b. gives CFC a way of effectively supervising and encouraging household leaders in their service;
c. provides an environment for greater interaction among CFC members and for intrahousehold relationship building (e.g. joint Lord’s Day celebration);
d. enables the elders to spot, monitor and develop potential leaders in a systematic and continuing way;
e. serves as a channel for information dissemination and feedback.
A unit is ideally composed of 4 to 6 households with a total membership of from 24 to 36 couples. However, a unit’s membership may actually range from lower than 20 to more than 50.
B. THE UNIT HEAD
A unit is headed by a Unit Head, who is a man appointed by the Chapter Head. The husband is the “Unit Head”, while both husband and wife are the “unit leaders”.
1. The Role of the Unit Head
a. He is the pastor of the members who make up the unit. It is he, not the household heads, who exercises overall pastoral care for unit members, either directly or as delegated to the household heads.
b. He supervises the service of household leaders in his unit. He follows up and gives feedback to household heads in the exercise of their responsibilities. He makes sure household heads know and implement the Household Head’s Manual.
c. He fosters greater love and unity among unit members by thinking up and implementing various activities which promote interaction.
d. He draws out and encourages potential leaders.
e. He implements and takes responsibility for all directives, programs, instructions, etc., coming from the CFC Council, CFC Director and/or Chapter Head.
2. Qualifications of a Unit Head
The Unit Head is selected based on the following criteria:
o Must have the time to take on the added pastoral responsibility of handling the unit.
o Able to attend Unit Heads’ meetings.
o Able to make a regular visitation of households.
o As household head
o As CLP and MER head or assistant
o A stable and committed prayer life
o Family life generally in good order
o Has grasped the vision of CFC
o Living out the covenant of CFC
o Priorities in life worked out and in good order
d. Personal characteristics
o Has loyalty and commitment to CFC
o Has a servant’s heart
o Has love for the brethren and a desire to see them grow in the Lord
o Able to accept direction and correction
o Has zeal for the Lord
o Has a good reputation
o Member of Couples for Christ for at least two years
o Served as household head for at least one year
3. Attitude of a Unit Head
In order to properly function in a way that would truly be helpful to members of the unit, the Unit Head needs to have some basic attitudes:
a. He must have the mind and heart of a servant. Just like the Lord Jesus, he must come to serve rather than be served. His service should only be an expression of his love for the Lord. He should be humble in his service and put the interest of his members first. He should be obedient to the Lord and to those whom the Lord has put in charge of his service.
b. He must take on a shepherd’s heart. With Jesus as his model, he is to care for the members in his unit. While he may not have to do this himself directly, he directly supervises the household leaders under his authority. He is the “father” of the family which is his unit.
c. He is to be a model of what a CFC leader should be like in his personal, family and professional life.
d. He must learn to serve by and in the power of the Holy Spirit. He must pray for and be open to the gifts of the Holy Spirit, allowing most of all for the Holy Spirit to fill him with the gift of agapelove.
4. Duties and Responsibilities
a. Ensures proper functioning of the unit.
o Makes pastoral visits to different household meetings to ensure that things are going well and households are being handled properly.
o Sees to the full integration of membercouples into CFC.
o Sees to it that members’ lives are in good order.
o Promotes faithfulness and monitors attendance at household meetings, prayer meetings and other CFC activities.
o Keeps membership list active, current and updated.
b. Meets with household leaders within his unit once a month for a service meeting.
c. Monitors and ensures that household leaders and unit members attend formation courses required for them.
d. Promotes, follows through and monitors the practice of persontoperson, strategic evangelization by members.
e. Fosters brotherhood and sisterhood among unit members by organizing some activities for the purpose, such as a joint Lord’s Day celebration.
f. Handles pastoral problems as referred to him by the household heads; refers more serious problems to the Chapter Head.
g. Keeps an eye out for members who can perform vital services for the body, such as giving talks, being discussion group or household heads, serving in our family ministries, or those who have other service, administrative, worship or musical gifts.
h. Encourages members to support the work of CFC financially; follows up on and gives input to household leaders regarding their members’ financial contributions.
i. Takes every opportunity to get to know unit members personally and well.
j. Recommends members who may be in need of some financial assistance to the Chapter Head.
k. With clearance from the Chapter Head, may initiate transfers of members from one household to another.
l. Refers to, consults with, and works out with the Chapter Head the possible dropping from CFC of a couple due to absences or other reasons.
m. Reports to the Chapter Head regularly regarding the status of the unit and of unit members, if necessary even outside of the regular service meetings.
n. Attends all meetings of CFC leaders.
C. RELATIONSHIPS OF A UNIT HEAD
1. With Household Heads under Him
a. If the unit is compared to a family, the household head is an older brother while the Unit Head is the father to the unit members. Thus the household head cares for his household members but under the direct supervision of the Unit Head, who has overall responsibility for the life of unit members.
b. As pastor, the Unit Head has the authority coming from the CFC Council to back him up. He is to act decisively in guiding, directing and/or correcting the household leaders in his unit.
c. The household head focuses on facilitating discussion and developing brotherhood and sisterhood in the household group. He is not expected to exercise pastoral leadership over his group, but he would normally encounter certain pastoral challenges which he should refer to his Unit Head.
Some such areas are:
o Severe or advanced relationship problems between husband and wife.
o Issues which pastorally affect the unit or across units. E.g., financial borrowing without proper consultation and clearance.
o Unfaithfulness of members to meetings, requiring a decision to retain or drop a couple from CFC.
o Slander or gossip which erodes relationships within the unit or across units.
o Serious wrongdoing.
o Moral and theological questions, such as taxes, bribery vs. extortion, penance, the sacraments, the Rosary, etc.
o Proselytizing and ecumenical relationships.
The Unit Head, based on reports during the monthly service meetings, decides on what pastoral issues need his personal attention. This does not mean that he handles it himself (he may instruct the household head to handle it and just guide him) but that he is on top of the situation.
d. The Unit Head meets with his household leaders once a month for a service meeting. The meeting shall dwell on any or all of the following:
o Reporting in general on how the different households are doing.
o Provision of pastoral guidance and direction in handling of couples and of household meetings.
o Discussion and resolution of problems or issues brought up by the household heads.
o A check on faithfulness in attendance to household meetings, prayer meetings and other activities.
o A check on members’ financial support for CFC.
o Identification and discussion of training exposure for potential leaders.
o Administrative matters.
2. With the Unit Members
a. The Unit Head is directly responsible for the full integration of unit members into CFC and for their continuing growth in the Lord.
b. As such, the Unit Head must take every opportunity and exercise his best effort to get to know unit members individually. The various ways open to him are:
o Report of the household heads (he should keep notes on individual members).
o Visitation of households.
o Household activities, such as Lord’s Day celebrations.
o Unit activities, such as outings, unit Lord’s Day celebration, teaching nights, etc.
o CFC activities (he should seek them out).
o Inviting individually a husband or a couple for a meal or some other activity outside of CFC.
3. With the Chapter Head
a. The Unit Head is under the direct supervision and authority of the Chapter Head, who is the overall pastor and governor of the chapter.
b. In order for the Unit Head to himself receive pastoral guidance and also as a way for the CFC Council to “feel the pulse” of CFC, the Unit Head needs to be in constant communication and coordination with the Chapter Head. Such might require at least a monthly service meeting, done either informally (only between the Chapter Head and the Unit Head) or formally (Chapter Head together with all the Unit Heads in the chapter), preferably the latter.
D. PASTORAL CARE
The Unit Head is the pastor of the members in his unit. While he does not necessarily have direct weekly contact with the unit members, he keeps on top of the situation through the household leaders. Thus occasional feedback and the regular monthly service meeting are essential.
Following are areas of pastoral concern:
o Are the men relating to one another well? The women?
o Are they free to share with one another?
o Do they worship freely together?
o Do they ever do anything together outside of the household meeting?
o How is their general attitude towards CFC?
2. Individual members.
o How are they growing in Christ?
o Daily prayer? Bible reading?
o Relationship with spouse? With children?
o Relationship with authority? To household head, to you, overall to CFC?
o Growth in financial stewardship.
o Problems if any.
3. Time and service of household heads.
o Do they have enough time for themselves, family, job and service?
o How are they experiencing their service?
o Are they growing in confidence? Do they need more help?
E. VISITATION OF HOUSEHOLDS
To conduct a visitation is to attend a household meeting of one of the households within the unit.
The Unit Head should make a visitation of a household at least once a month. It could be more often as the situation requires and as his time and commitments permit. The monthly visitation means that the Unit Head goes out once a month, visiting the different households turn by turn. It does not mean that each household will be visited monthly.
The visitation enables the Unit Head to:
a. Get to know all the members personally, including glimpses of their spiritual, personal and social life.
b. Feel the pulse of the unit in general.
c. Whenever appropriate, allow some time for household members to ask questions and to dialogue with him.
d. Support the household head both in his personal development as a servant and in his position of authority over the household.
e. Appreciate much more the reports given to him by the household heads, thus enabling him to give better pastoral inputs.
f. Be the focal point of unity in the body, thus averting the isolation of households from the rest of CFC.
g. Spot potential leaders.
4. Things to observe
a. Worship time
o Are all the elements present, i.e., singing, praising, thanksgiving, petition, spiritual gifts?
o Do all the members participate actively?
o Is there good order?
o Opening of hearts to the Lord.
b. CFC culture
o Start and end on time?
o Household head exercising active leadership?
o What is the tone of the meeting
Promotes friendship and unity.
Not extremes: too serious/too social.
o Respect for and acceptance of household head.
o Decency and modesty in clothes.
o Honor and respect for one another.
o Proper speech.
o Content of sharing/discussion.
o Openness of members.
o Healthy interaction.
o Good order.
o Simplicity of snacks.
o Closeness to and affection for each other.
5. Your posture
a. You are an observer and are not supposed to take over the conduct of the meeting. It is supposed to be a regular meeting, the only difference being your presence.
b. In your words and actions, convey to the household head that you are there to support him, to help him improve in his service and to care for the members of the unit, not to be a faultfinder or critic.
c. Whenever appropriate, especially during the fellowship, interact as much as possible with the household members. Get to know them as brothers and sisters.
d. Give feedback to the household head privately, either during the time for fellowship, or after the meeting (stay behind a little while), or some time soon after the household meeting day.
F. TEACHING PROGRAM IN CFC
As Unit Head, one of your tasks is to see to it that all unit members take the required teachings in CFC. You have the responsibility for scheduling and monitoring their attendance in these activities.
The teaching program in CFC consists of the following:
o Formation Program for all members
o Leadership Training for leaders
1. The Formation Program is designed to help members grow as Christians in their personal, family and corporate lives. It consists of the following:
o Christian Life Program (CLP)
o Covenant Orientation (CO)
o Financial Stewardship
o Marriage Enrichment Retreat (MER)
o Evangelization Training (ET)*
o Spiritual Gifts (SG)
* Normally given at the end of every year to all new members, those who joined CFC during the year. This is in preparation for the new round of CLPs that would be mounted the following year.
2. In addition, for household leaders the Formation Program would include the following:
o Foundations for Christian Living (FCL)
o Scripture Sharing (SS)
3. CFC offers many other courses which are optional. Members are encouraged to avail of these as well.
4. Leadership Training is designed to equip members for service in CFC. For unit members, it is composed of:
a. CLP Training
o Given to those tapped to serve in CLPs.
o A halfday session with 3 talks.
o Handled by the chapter.
b. Household Leaders Training
o Household leaders go through a oneyear training program, normally composed of thirteen separate sessions.
o The orientation session, composed of 4 talks, is given right before assuming their positions, normally at the end of the CLP.
o The other 12 sessions are conducted once a month over the course of one year. Household leaders appointed at different times during the year may just join these sessions at any point and continue every month until they finish all 12 sessions.
o These 12 sessions may be handled by the chapter, the chapter cluster, and/or the Pastoral Formation Office (PFO).
C. Unit Leaders Training
o These are monthly sessions over the course of one year.
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