Lunch with a friend brought me this story and the OK to share it. When the pastor arrived at the small church, the long, long time (controlling) treasurer immediately got upset with him and declared she was resigning. He said fine. He spoke to another lady in the church who agreed to take the job, then ran it through the Nominating Committee and she was elected.
The new treasurer became the target of the old treasurer. Nothing she could do was right. So finally, in frustration, she took the church books back to the old treasurer and quit. When the pastor heard, he was livid. He called the new treasurer and told her to retrieve the books and bring them to the church, the old treasurer had no authority to have them.
Sunday morning the new treasurer arrived with the books. The pastor called several leaders of the church into the office, took the books and locked them in the desk drawer. "Two treasurers have resigned," he said. "That means there won't be any checks written for bills or salaries, until you find a treasurer that all of you can support."
Within three days they had a treasurer.
Here's the beauty of that story. The pastor didn't "own" their dysfuntional structure. He was firm and clear in letting the leaders know it was their problem to fix. What he did was creative. There was some risk involved, but that risk was nothing compared to the quagmire he'd been in if he had tried to "keep everyone happy." May we all learn from his example.