When our pastoral search committee first began in 2015, we laid down some ground rules. One came as a very strong recommendation from our search consultant, Dr. McGowan:
The search committee shouldn’t discuss specific candidates with any other members of the congregation, including spouses.
I suspect his recommendation was based to some degree on his prior experience, as well as the region where he lives. You see, our denomination, the PCA, is centered in the south; there are far more PCA churches in the southern states than in other parts of the country. This map shows the concentration (click the map to zoom in for greater detail):