CPC Pastor Search Info and Updates
Each PCA congregation has the privilege and responsibility of selecting its own Senior Pastor. The Pastoral Search Committee was elected by the congregation to work on its behalf in that effort. The Committee does not select the pastor. Rather, it does the necessary background research, first gathering input from the Congregation and wise counsel from a variety of sources and then identifying and evaluating candidates accordingly.
“Then the pulpit committee shall, after consultation and deliberation, recommend to the congregation a candidate who, in its judgment, fulfills the Constitutional requirements of that office (e.g., BCO 8, 13-16, and 21) and is most suited to be profitable to the spiritual interests of the congregation.” (Book of Church Order 20-2) The congregation has the authority and responsibility to accept or reject that recommendation.
Because the Pastor is so important to God’s people (Jeremiah 3:15) and because “those who teach shall be judged more strictly” (James. 3:1) great care is taken to properly qualify men for the calling of Teaching Elder (Pastor). To become a Teaching Elder in the PCA a man must:
- Earn a Bachelor or Master degree from an approved college or university
- Also earn a Bachelor or Master degree from an approved theological seminary or a theological study program as approved by the General Assembly.
- Serve a one-year internship while a member at a particular church under care by his Presbytery.
- Meet the Constitutional requirements for the office of Elder as found in BCO 8-1 through 8-3.
- Meet the Constitutional requirements for the calling of Teaching Elder as found in BCO 8-4 through 8-6.
- Become licensed by passing an “ordination trial” that includes written and oral examinations covering:
- A statement of his faith and his calling
- Basic knowledge of doctrine as outlined in the Confession of Faith and the Larger and Shorter Catechisms.
- Practical knowledge of Bible content and its application (Please see BCO 21-4-c for the exhaustive list of the 15 major components of “ordination trials”.)
- Have been ordained into the PCA or else admitted by transfer as spelled out in BCO 13-6.
Yes … with two caveats. First, “On the election of a pastor, if it appears that a large minority of the voters are averse to the candidate who has received the majority of the votes, and cannot be induced to concur in the call, the moderator shall endeavor to dissuade the majority from prosecuting it further, but if the electors being nearly or quite unanimous, or if the majority shall insist upon their right to call Pastor, the moderator shall proceed to draw a call in due form, certifying at the same time in writing the number of those who do not concur in the call, and any facts of the importance, all of which proceedings shall be laid before the Presbytery, together with the call.” (Book of Church Order 20-5)1
The second exception addresses internal candidates, who must meet or exceed an 80% threshold. “The associate or assistant pastors may continue to serve a congregation when the pastoral relation of the senior pastor is dissolved, but they may not normally succeed the senior pastor without an intervening term of service in a different field of labor. However a congregation by a secret ballot with four- fifths (4/5) majority vote may petition Presbytery for an exception which by a three-fourths (3/4) majority vote Presbytery may grant. Presbytery needs to determine if the dissolution of the pastoral relationship with the senior pastor was brought about in Christian love and good order on the part of the parties concerned. (Book of Church Order 23-1)
After the congregation has voted to approve a candidate, that congregation – by public vote – appoints a commission to “prosecute the call before its Presbytery.” “The Presbytery, having heard all the parties, may, upon reviewing the whole case, either recommend them to desist from prosecuting the call; or may order it to be delivered to the minister to whom it is addressed, with or without advice; or may decline to place a call in his hands; as it shall appear most beneficial for the peace and edification of the Church at large.” (Book of Church Order 20-10)
Searching for a pastor is challenging and the day-to-day spiritual warfare we are engaged in individually and as a church make it no easier. We will be searching for the man God has selected to lead us in that fight and we can expect resistance from powers and dominions to do so. Pray for:
- Jana Henry, Rob Block, and Jeanette Baldwin are the Chair, vice chair, and clerk for the committee. Pray for them in their various roles. Pray for all the committee members, especially for spiritual health, diligence, endurance, and discernment. Pray that all would come together as a team quickly.
- Continue to pray for the man who God has chosen to be our senior pastor and for his family.
- The committee is about to achieve some critical milestones in their preparation to advertise and take applications. Pray that they meet those milestones successfully.
The Book of Church Order, commonly referred to as BCO, is part of the constitution of the Presbyterian Church in America, which is subject to and subordinate to the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, the inerrant Word Of God. The BCO is comprised of the Form of Government, the Rules of Discipline and the Directory for Worship as adopted by the Church. (https://www.pcaac.org/bco/)
Ace Horan, Sr
Jeanette Baldwin – Alternate
Rob Block – Alternate
Read our Church Profile
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The congregation met after the Worship service to nominate members to serve on the Pastor Search Committee. Results would be shared by email later in the week.
Ace Horan, Sr
Jeanette Baldwin – Alternate
Rob Block – Alternate
We want to thank all of those who accepted nominations and stood for election for the humility you displayed in our discussions and for your unselfish willingness to serve our Lord and our church.
Please begin praying now for these women and men and the work they will begin right after the new year begins. Pray especially that in all they do, they will seek God’s will, the leading of the Holy Spirit, and that all their work and words would bring glory to our Lord.
May God bless you all
The Session of CPC
The committee met and elected officers. Jana Henry was voted chair, Jeanette Baldwin was voted as the clerk, and Rob Block as vice chair.
The Pulpit Committee has met Monday evenings since January with a few breaks. Months have been spent studying and praying about our pastoral search. We have prepared all documents to post for the job opening through the PCA website. Additionally we have created a church profile pamphlet which will be available on the PCA website and the CPC site. Our plan is to move forward after Memorial Day.
Today our job opening and church profile were published at the PCA Pastor Search page. It can be viewed here.
The PSC has distributed our e-pamphlet and pastor search information to various resources. At this time we have begun to receive applications and are processing the data, as well as listening to or watching sermons from applicants.
We ask you to continue to pray for us. Specifically pray:
• That God would be glorified in this endeavor.
• That the committee will have wisdom, humility and patience as we go through this process
• Pray for that man and his family that God has already chosen to be our senior pastor
• That our congregation will continue to be patient while waiting on God’s timing