Our search for a new pastor has reached a major milestone! After several months of working with you to discover who we are and what we want our church to become, your Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC) is ready to publish our church’s Ministry Information Form. The Ministry Information Form is a 13-page document that will tell the world about our ministry, history and future goals. In the next few days, it will be uploaded to the website of our denomination, the Presbyterian Church (USA). Prospective candidates for our senior minister position will use the platform to learn about our church and participate in a matching process that pairs their skills and desires with our needs and wishes.
We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to you, the congregation. Thanks to your participation over the last few months in the survey, listening sessions, and many conversations, we are confident about what you want in a minister who will shepherd growth and vitality in our church. The information generated from your collective input created our Ministry Information Form.
The survey of the congregation yielded very clear results. It revealed that our history and culture provide a strong foundation for our church and that we have significant cohesion both in what we believe and in what we want for the future. The survey found that our primary goals are: (1) to attract more families with children and youth; (2) to provide more opportunities for Christian education at all ages and stages; and (3) to reinvigorate our outreach ministries. Enclosed are the survey summary and frequently asked questions from the company who wrote and analyzed the document, Holy Cow Consulting. The detailed results are available for review in the church office.
The feedback from our three listening sessions in May was overwhelming in its consistency. You told us that you want a contagiously energetic and enthusiastic preacher who can reach out to and bring in a variety of people, especially families with children; someone who is a good listener and a strong communicator; and someone who will honor the traditions of our church, while innovatively taking us in new directions. The listening sessions also confirmed that our members and friends are very invested in the future of the church, that there is significant hopefulness about what is to come, and that our congregation genuinely cares for one another.
Where do we go from here? Of course, only God knows how the Holy Spirit will lead candidates and our church to each other in a true sense of calling. We expect that we will begin actively considering candidates in July. While we have no idea about God’s schedule, it is very possible that we could have a new minister by the first of next year. Thanks to your enthusiasm, support and input, we will march ahead looking for the one whom God has chosen to lead us into a bright future. As you have heard from the PNC before, and as articulated by Cheryl Gibson, let us pray ardently and purposefully, trusting in God’s provision and timing.
On Calling a Pastor – Remember! We are all involved
During the time of transition between pastors, we at the First Presbyterian Church of Covington are engaged in a spiritual discernment. This process as you know, is to discover a call to ministry for a new pastor. The goal is to determine what God wants the church to be and do in the next phase of the congregation’s life. This task involves all the participants in this our Body of Christ.
Once this becomes clear, the Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC), in consultation with the presbytery, will press ahead with the discernment process of discovering the candidate who God is calling to be the pastor in this next chapter of the congregation’s life and ministry.
May the Good Lord continue to guide us.
1169 Clark Street SW
Covington, GA 30014