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Consider This Call To A "Mega-Church"

Thomas F. Fischer, M.Div., M.S.A.

Number 149

The following job description is reprinted from an actual job description approved by a very large congregation for use in their interview/calling process for Senior Pastor. Read it and then consider the following discussion questions below. The identity of the church and specific identifying information has been withheld at the Editor's discretion.
 
Senior Pastor Job Description:

Anywhere Christian Church

 
Part I: Key Responsibilities
 
1. Spiritual leadership and Vision
2. Conducts Public Worship with Sacraments.
3. Administrative Leadership
4. Responsive to Individuals' ministerial needs
5. Creates enthusiasm for worship and Study of the word
6. Maintain and nurture personal faith
7. Community outreach and increased growth through conversion.
 
Part II: Key Characteristics
 
1. Personal faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
2. Ability to motivate people in Bible Study and in participation in worship and sacraments
3.Ability to provide motivating sermons and worship services.
4. Ability and experience in providing managerial leadership to the staff and lay leadership.
5. Ability and desire to provide guidance for staff and lay workers, to communicate requirements of their positions and to motivate towards accountability for their responsibilities.
6. Ability to be sensitive to the needs and feelings of individuals.
7. Ability and desire to effectively manage personal time, to empower others to act in decision-making, and to maintain oversight responsibility for the total church and school.
8. Ability and experience in working with and developing a strong team ministry and promoting strong communications among staff and lay leaders.
 
Part III: Key Congregational and Staff Needs
 
1. Growth in worship and sacrament attendance among members.
2. Growth in the Bible Study opportunities and participation.
3. Re-evaluation and/or recommitment of the Church and School vision.
4. Restructuring of worship services for appeal to new and younger members.
5. Stronger outreach contact and follow-up of visitors, potential, new and inactive members.
6. Education and strong commitment to stewardship of money, time and abilities.
7. Establishment of an intentional prayer ministry involving large numbers of members.
8. Professional staff development in communications, accountability, trust and performance.
9. Reorganization of the administrative structure of the professional staff and congregation.
 
Part IV: Key Challenges
 
1. Provide spiritual leadership and vision to a parish of over 3000 souls, 1000 in regular worship.
2. Provide vision and direction to a "full service" congregation desirous to ministry to the spiritual and support needs of people in many different situations through Christian Care Programs.
3. Provide support to a 700 student Christian Day School desire to expand Christian education opportunity to more children in the area in a multi-campus setting.
3. Guide the congregation's $5,000,000 challenge to expand and improve its current physical facilities and build a North Campus church and school location at a site already selected.
4. Conduct public worship in a multi-service schedule with traditional and non-traditional formats that appeal to different age groups and worship styles.
6. Administer the sacraments to 2,500 communicants, 1/4 of which commune regularly.
7. Provide leadership and direction to the Directors' staff of 15 people and the total professional staff of 35 people.
8. Provide business management leadership to the staff, lay officers and boards for the congregation's $2,000,000 annual budget operation.
9. Expand and improve the broadcast media of worship services and other events.
10. Address the "church plateau" phenomenon.
11. Provide leadership for a men's ministry using Promise Keeper principles to combat male passivity (spiritual and relational) within the church.
12. Provide motivation to the congregation to move beyond the 30% adult assimilation through regular small group participation, and/or acceptance of a church role or task.

 

Questions To Consider...
 
1) What expectations does this church have of their prospective Senior Pastor?

 

 
2) Which of the expectation in #1 above are appropriate for a pastor? Which are inappropriate?
 

 

3) Which items in the Job Description are within the Senior Pastor's control? Which are not?

 

 
4) Briefly describe your impression of the congregation and its leadership.
 

 

5) What ministry gifts do you think the person who accepts this call to Senior Pastor ought to have?
 

 

6) Based on this Job Description, what special leadership abilities should the Senior Pastor have?
 

 

7) What kinds of spiritual attributes ought this Senior Pastor to possess?

 

 
8) What kinds of ministry struggles--personal and professional--can the Senior pastor of this church expect?

 

 
9) What kinds of coping mechanisms and safeguards ought this Senior Pastor have "in place" to sustain a long-term healthy and effective ministry in this congregation?

 

 
10) If this congregation were to call you to be their Senior Pastor, would you accept it or reject it? For what reasons?
 

 

11) Finally, which ministry gifts would you like God to give to you? Which would you like Him to strengthen?
 

 

12) List five reasons why you are thankful that God has called you to your present church.
 

 

 

13) List three areas of ministry that you pray God will strengthen through your pastoral leadership in the next two years.

 

 

14) Write a prayer below a) Thanking God for your call to your unique God-given ministry; b) Asking for greater strength and effectiveness in the use of your ministry gifts; and c) Ask God to lead your congregation to the realization of the three ministry areas above under your leadership.
 

 

15) Put your prayer in a private place in your office for you to see daily (e.g. behind the door, in the center desk drawer, in a picture frame on your office wall, etc.). Pray your prayer above daily and watch God's will work in response to your prayerful response to His calling.
 
Thomas F. Fischer

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