Calvary’s Interim Journey:
We Have a Plan!
The one question perhaps most asked during an interim time is: How quickly can we get a new permanent minister? That’s easy enough to answer: just put out the word, sort through the names that pour in, and call someone from the list.
But that’s not the most helpful question. We need to ask the right questions—questions that, while often difficult and hard and which take time and effort, can lead us down incredible paths of discovery. Right questions can be the first step in breaking unhelpful patterns, moving past stagnation, and finding answers that are not merely quick, but hopeful and helpful, and useful for creating a good future.
Right questions are everything. Like: Who are we as a church, what brought us to this place, why do we exist? What does faithfulness to God in our context look like? What is the future we want to create? What are the resources we will need to achieve that future? How do we move toward that future together, with unity, purpose and joy? Where do we need to change in order to grow? These are some of the right questions that need to be asked before the process of calling a minister begins. These are the things we must ask now—and, which you, not I, must answer.
A small interim planning committee—composed of Eva Powell, Amy Dale, Rick Goodman, Jay Mayfield, and me—has met and proposes that we begin answering these questions through three congregational surveys. The surveys will be distributed by paper and by computer/Survey Monkey—soliciting opinions regarding Calvary’s past, present, and future.
We want as many as possible to complete each survey. Our intent is to give two months, more or less, to each survey: sending out, time for response, time for assembling the responses, and for congregational meetings to hear and reflect on the responses.
From these surveys we’ll gather answers—and with this we’ll be well along in clarity about who we are and where we want to go. With this done, a search committee could be called by late October/early November. A new pastor could be in place by summer or fall of 2016, the first of 2017 at the latest. A one-and-a-half to two year time frame for an intentional interim is fairly standard.
Well, that’s the plan. Let’s do it—and, in so doing let’s discover how good it is to be a part of Calvary.
Grace and Peace, Pastor Joe