The Questions?

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Salty, Aug 4, 2010.

  1. Salty

    Salty
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    Often a church will send a prospective pastor a list of questions. Would you consider sending the church a list? If so, what questions would you put on your list for them to answer.

    What would be your thinking if they:
    A. did not respond
    B. did not respond to certain questions?
     
  2. Tom Bryant

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    Thanks for starting this. I was too lazy!

    Other than for a statement of faith that for most of us would be a given, I would ask at least these:

    1. How much do you owe?
    2. What was the most successful evangelistic outreach and when?
    3. Why did your last pastor leave?
    4. What is his contact information?
    5. When was the last church fight? What was it over? How was it resolved?
    6. What role do you see your next pastor's wife playing in the church?
    7. What do you see as your next pastor's main responsibility as pastor?
    8. How do you expect your next pastor to schedule his time?
    9. What role does your SS play in the church?

    there's a few more, but church is starting in a few....
     
  3. abcgrad94

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    Do you have a church parsonage? If so, what are your expectations of the pastor and his family living there? Is it in good repair? If the parsonage needs repairs, does the church pay for the repairs or is the pastor expected to do so? How many church members have keys to the parsonage?

    Are the pastor and family expected to house and feed guests, such as guest speakers, missionaries, and vagrants seeking hand outs? If so, does the church help pay for this or does the pastor pay for it?
     
  4. Tom Bryant

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    Good questions... I don't think any man would have ever thot to ask those. :tonofbricks:
     
  5. thegospelgeek

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    The only question to ask the church, "is the Holy Spirit leading you to vote for me as Pastor."

    The only question for the church to ask the Pastor, "Is the Holy Spirit leading you to pastor this Church"

    The questions can come in several forms and flavors, but that is the only real thing that matters.
     
  6. TomVols

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    Yes it does matter.

    However, in the real world of pastoral ministry, the ins and outs and trappings and land mines go way beyond this.

    It shouldn't, but it does. We can't close our eyes to reality. That church that the Holy Spirit is leading you to has expectations, baggage, role definitions, practices, traditions, by-laws, etc. The pastor God is leading has his own set of all those, too. We can't gloss over it all by just saying "Oh, God's leading in this." It's like a couple getting married saying God brought them together, all the while ignoring money, relational roles defined by Scripture, etc.
     
  7. thegospelgeek

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    Can't we seek God in prayer and trust that he will answer? I'm not saying you should not check it out, but rather trust God to lead you. For example, if a church has a history of in fighting but God is leading you to take that church, should you turn it down because of the history? If that is the case the Moses should have definitly turned God down when he told him to go to Egypt and face Pharoh, bad situation, bad fit.

    I think you should check and be aware of what is going on and what is expected, but not make the decision based on your finding, but make them based on God's leading.
     
  8. TomVols

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    No one is saying not to follow God's leading. We're just saying it never hurts to ask questions of the people or of the prospective pastor. Diligence glorifies God.
     
  9. Major B

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    Mo Questions

    1. Are your people Democratic, Republican, or disinterested in politics?
    2. Do you consider preaching on social issues to be off limits?
    3. What is your church's stand on abortion and gay rights?
    4. Is there an evangelist, former pastor, or other preacher with "special status" in your church?
    5. Does the pastor have any say on staff changes or additions (music, youth, children's minister).
    6. Is the pastor the "boss" or "supervisor" of other staff people?
    7. Is there a major project that the church wants to do and are waiting for a pastor to be called before the church does it? (Believe it or not, this happened to me, a major building project was proposed and voted on during the first business meeting after I arrived!) They had forgot to tell me about it.
    8. How do the deacons and the people get along with each other?
     
  10. Major B

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    commentary on questions

    There are several churches around here that are yellow dog Democrats (yet conservative in theology). Other churches are about 90% GOP. If the pastor's wife drives her Honda Accord into the parking lot on the first day they are there, and she has a Bill O'Reilly or Glen Beck bumper sticker, you may be in for it. In other churches, moderate GOP are suspect of Commie leanings.

    Same thing, especially gay rights if one or more deacons have a gay child.

    This can be good or bad, but you need to know.

    I was doing some counseling at a buddy's church, and I asked the new youth leader, "Where's your boss?" He said, "The pastor is not my boss, I work for Jesus. He caused a church split

    One church I knew well had the deacons and the people in a total disconnect--there were no deacons on the pulpit committee!

    Oh, and I wish I did not have to mention this at this late date--How well does the church tolerate racially mixed marriages?

    Ah, Baptists politics
     
    #10 Major B, Aug 8, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 8, 2010
  11. Major B

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    Something that has come up around here--"Are you a Calvinist?"
     
  12. pocadots1990

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    Open Church Communion or Closed?
     
  13. Major B

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    Wine or grape juice in the communion.

    Women wearing pants instead of dresses. One church did not have this as a formal rule, but "everybody knew." I asked my wife how she knew that, and she just patted me on the arm and gave me that look of infinite female wisdom, and said, "It's a girl thing, dear."
     
  14. Bob Farnaby

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    The group that represents the church I belong to (Baptist Union of Victoria) issues a questonaire to both pastors seeking churches and churches seeking pastors. For the church to use the denomination's services it needs to complete the questionaire. A prospective pastor sees the church's responses prior to any major interview.

    Regards
    Bob
     
  15. Tom Butler

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    Saul's experience is instructive.

    After his conversion, he spent some time in Damascus, preaching Christ in the synagogues. But a lot of folks were still suspicious and remembered his war on believers.

    The Jews plotted to kill him, but the plot became known to Saul's friends. So they let him down over the city wall in a basket and he escaped to Jerusalem.

    Now, here's the interesting part. Saul found the believers in Jerusalem and wanted to join the church there. They wouldn't let him. They literally didn't believe his testimony, and were afraid of him. One may even infer from Acts 9 that the apostles had not even heard of Saul's conversion.

    Barnabas, however, took Saul before the apostles, vouched for him and they finally accepted him.

    Note there was no discussion of the Spirit's leading in the matter. They didn't even take Paul's word about his conversion. The apostles wanted some hard evidence. Barnabas gave it to them.

    My point is that one's call to preach and call to pastor should be tested. It's much to serious a business to take a cum-bah-yah attitude.
     
  16. SBCPreacher

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    I would ask about the role of deacons in the church - Bord of directors of ministers? Makes a difference.

    Other questions have been great. Especially abc's one about how many people have keys to the parsonage. Never thought of that, but it's a great question.
     
  17. abcgrad94

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    I asked the church this question when we moved here. They had no idea. The locks had not been changed for 20 years (and about 6 pastors.)

    I can tell you exactly how many people have the keys now!
     

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