Advice Regarding Interim Pastors

Part of my role as Coordinator for Pastoral Ministry includes dealing with pastors and congregations in the call process. 

As I prepared my Call Committee Workshop I came across a very helpful article by Lavern Brown on the advisability of interim pastors. I have found that many congregations neglect the essential work of dealing with the transitional issues that arise after the resignation and departure of their pastor. I offer Brown’s article as grist for the mill and perhaps for some needed conversations around the Council table.

There are certainly many situations where an interim pastor is not necessary or advisable.  However, considering this possibility and entertaining this conversation often engages congregational leadership in weighing mission-critical questions about their own identity, present circumstances and resources, and where God is calling them in the future.

There is a big difference between a retired pastor or one available for call, and a well trained interim pastor, which are in short supply.  I hope to address this shortage among our association in the coming years by offering a training class for interim pastors. 

In the meantime, I'm happy to discuss these matters with those interested, and I also cover these issues briefly in my call committee workshop, which I'm offering at various locations throughout the year. 

God's blessings as you prayerfully discern God's direction in the life and ministry of your congregations.

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