pastor searches

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by mont974x4, Jan 7, 2013.

  1. mont974x4

    mont974x4
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    The thread seeking advice on what to ask pastoral candidates hits on a concern I have had for several years.

    American churches (I don't know about foreign churches) seem to be woefully unprepared for seeking a new pastor.

    Yes, there are many books available. However, that does not seem to matter much. Looking through several websites that list churches ads seeking applicants drives this point home.

    I saw one several weeks ago that said they wanted a pastor to live in their parsonage.

    In the early discussions with one church I asked, "What are you looking for in a pastor?" and the response was, "That's a great question. I'll get back to you."


    Churches, at least looking at their ads, rarely know what they want.

    Those that do know what they want rarely have realistic expectations.


    What can pastors do to better prepare their church for the inevitable pastor change? Remember the reasons for the change vary and are not always due to scandal.


    I know a pastor in SD that told the church he was retiring. He was giving them several months notice. He then focused his sermons, and Bible study, on looking at the individual qualifications Paul wrote to Timothy and Titus. That was a good thing. He also kept reminding them that it is a good thing to raise up men from their midst, which meant encouraging them to prayerfully look at their own members for their next pastor. I think that is also a good thing.

    What else?

    I think this is an important part of our overall responsibility in shepherding faithfully and fully.
     
  2. RG2

    RG2
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    I've seen both of these way too many times... too often the latter.
     
  3. just-want-peace

    just-want-peace
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    As a member of a search committee several years ago, my main criteria was that the candidate believe and teach the bible literally!!!
    'Course there were other important requirements, but this one was the deal breaker for me.
     
  4. Jkdbuck76

    Jkdbuck76
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    I said this yesterday: the #1 mistake of a pulpit committee is listening to the preaching too early in the process. Weeding folks out theologically and weeding out those who would NOT fit in your church needs to happen first.

    Also, the pulpit committee needs to report REGULARLY to the congregation about what is going on without betraying confidential information. Yes, the people who are NOT on the pulpit committee need to know of any progress that is being made.
     
  5. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    This is good advice. Be patient. I've served on two search committees, and each time, we took a year to find the pastor God had for us.

    The word of the vacancy gets around rapidly, so resumes will be arriving fairly quickly. For those that look promising, look for a detailed doctrinal statement; if they don't send one, call them and ask for one. Or, by phone, ask specific questions about doctrine and practice.

    Your other advice, for regular reports to the congregation, is excellent, as well.

    Our committee set a rather high bar for action. We were so intent in finding God's man, that we decided that all five of us must agree before taking any action. We believed that the Holy Spirit would guide all of us; if anybody had doubts, we backed off. That made the no vote worth more than the other four, but when we did move in one direction, we moved together. I can't tell you how important that is.
     
  6. Jkdbuck76

    Jkdbuck76
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    I forgot: the congregation needs to bathe the entire process in continual prayer....non-stop!
     

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