By Ron Edmondson
When your church is in transition and you are looking for your next pastor, what do you do? Here are 8 steps for pastor search committees.
1. Choose the committee.
The first step in your church’s pastor search is choosing a committee. Many times churches spend so much time focusing on who should be on the committee, they stall the actual search process.
2. Survey the church.
People like to feel included. That’s why surveying your church is essential. While you cannot accommodate all of their wishes, if you don’t at least try, the church will be less supportive of your next pastor.
3. Write the job profile.
You want your church and community to shine to attract quality candidates, right? You must paint a picture of your church and the role through a job profile to provide clarity on the church’s history, culture, beliefs, expectations, and community.
4. Find strong candidates.
The more interest you stir as you search for qualified candidates, the greater chance you have of finding the right person God has for your church. The reality is that some candidates simply don’t have your church on their radar. You need to let them know you’re there.
5. Review resumes.
After you receive resumes, how do you sort through them? Hint: Most won’t meet your church’s qualifications and guidelines. Learn how to evaluate resumes before moving forward in the pastor selection process.
6. Interview top candidates.
Confidentiality is key as you begin the interview process. Pastors have been crushed in this phase. You must be discreet, strategic, and confidential for the sake of your church and your candidates.
7. Bring the candidate before the church.
Prepare your church to meet the candidate, and prepare your candidate to meet the church. Timing, allowing the candidate to provide input in the process, and hosting your candidate well are things your pastor search committee must consider.
8. Help the new pastor start well.
Your work is not over the day the church calls the pastor. Because the search committee knows the pastor best at this point, continue serving as a liaison in the early days of transition.