What Our Pastoral Search Committee Got Wrong – Part 1

I mentioned in my last post that I chaired our church’s pastoral search committee. We just recently completed our work, with our pastor starting three weeks ago. We met one final time to discuss what we learned, what went well, and how we could have done better.

All evidence indicates that the new pastor is the right man for our church at this time – we got that part right. One thing that we didn’t do as well as we could have is work with an internal candidate, a man in our congregation – I’ll call him Rusty – who applied for the job of solo pastor. It probably goes without saying that this kind of situation can be awkward at best and perhaps painful at worst.

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The Most Important Thing a Pastoral Search Committee Can Do

We installed a new pastor at our church this past Sunday. This was the culmination of 19 months of work by our pastoral search committee (PSC). I was asked to serve as the chairman of the committee, and I’m glad to say that our committee experienced an unusual level of unity. I know this isn’t always the case with committees, especially with a diverse group who spends so much time together. We have to thank God for how he kept us committed to the task at hand, to each other, and to our church.
Whenever we reported to the congregation on our progress, we made a point to mention our unity. We felt it was important to let the congregation know that we were unified throughout the process.
And when we finally announced the candidate’s name to the congregation, we made sure to let them know that the vote was unanimous.
We had agreed at the outset about our ground rules for voting on candidates:

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