To our faithful congregation,
A few months ago, session approved the formation of a new committee, the Staffing Task Force. This committee was formed as a reaction to our need and search for two associate pastors. The Staffing Task Force is comprised of 6 members; 3 staff members (Rev.Casey Thompson, Rev. Cheni Khonje, and Kelli Masters) and 3 ruling elders (Brian Clapp, Howard Holden, and Liz Walton). The main goals and objectives for this task force are to study how WPC is currently organized and operated from a staffing point of view, evaluate our current needs in terms of pastoral staff, and to make an educated recommendation to the newly appointed APNC in regards to the job descriptions for the 2 open pastoral positions.
In order to do our job to its fullest capacity and with the greatest benefit to our congregation, we took a “blank slate” approach, taking all personnel and personalities out of the equation and essentially re-building our church from scratch. In doing so, we were able to take your feedback from the Congregational Survey as well as our list of needs in mind to help us create a model of future growth and success for WPC.
Our first goal was to evaluate the way WPC is currently functioning from a staffing perspective. The model we have adopted and are currently using is one called a “Senior Pastor” model, in which the Senior Pastor acts as the head of staff as well as the head of all support and programming staff. This model tends to put a lot of stress on the senior pastor, especially in a church of our size. We decided it would be in our best interest to take a look at other options for a staffing hierarchy.
We then looked at two other models; an “Executive Pastor” model (becoming more popular) and a “Co-pastor” model (less popular). The “Co-pastor” model is typically a husband and wife team and is used at smaller churches. This model does not have a high rate of success at large churches with complex programming for a variety of reasons.
Next, we moved on to explore the “Executive Pastor” model. In this model, there is a Senior Pastor, an Executive Pastor, and then in our case a Program Pastor. The Senior Pastor acts as the Head of the Church and his/her major roles and responsibilities would be preaching, teaching, vision, and new member development. The Executive Pastor directly reports to the Senior Pastor, and his/her major responsibilities are care and compassion, administration, and stewardship. The Program Pastor would report directly to the Executive Pastor and his/her major roles and responsibilities would be Christian education, discipleship, fellowship, and evangelism.
After a lengthy discussion, the Staffing Task Force unanimously decided that the “Executive Pastor” model will provide WPC a greater opportunity to achieve growth in the days ahead. This new model was presented, discussed, voted on, and approved at the March session meeting.
With this directive in mind, the Staffing Task Force was now able to focus on the job descriptions for the 2 new pastoral staff positions that we are currently looking to fill. We worked diligently to clearly define the role for the Executive Pastor:
The Executive Pastor (EP) advances the mission of Wayne Presbyterian Church by equipping and supporting the staff and the leaders of the church as they strive to bear witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ in Wayne and beyond. Our mission statement sets forth our commitment: “In an atmosphere of caring hospitality, Wayne Presbyterian Church responds to God’s grace with worship, lifelong Christian education, and mission outreach.”
The EP coordinates the work and responsibilities of the church’s Associate Pastor for Christian Education and Discipleship and program staff as they seek to fulfill the vision for WPC developed by the Session and the Senior Pastor. The EP directly supports and assists the office of the Senior Pastor in envisioning, planning, and developing ways for WPC to be relevant and faithful in its ministry.
As well as the role for the Program Pastor:
The Associate Pastor for Education and Discipleship advances the mission of Wayne Presbyterian Church by equipping and supporting the staff and the leaders of the church as they strive to bear witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ in Wayne and beyond. Our mission statement sets forth our commitment: “In an atmosphere of caring hospitality, Wayne Presbyterian Church responds to God’s grace with worship, lifelong Christian education, and mission outreach.”
The Associate Pastor coordinates the work and responsibilities of the Directors of Children, Youth and Mission, and is directly involved in the Christian Education and spiritual formation of the congregation; participation in worship planning and developing ways for Wayne Pres to be relevant and faithful in its ministry are also under the purview of the Associate Pastor for Education and Discipleship.
The positions listed and described above are intended to be used as a guide for the APNC through the lens of where we want to go and who we want to be. We will ask and trust the APNC to flush out the details.
As it stands, WPC has 2 open staff positions. Most of our budget is spent on staff salaries and we still have needs that are not being met. We plan to evaluate the current roles and responsibilities of our existing staff and determine where we need to fill in the gaps and where there is overlap. We will then make a recommendation to session in regards to staffing positions and needs.
The Staffing Task Force’s plan is to wrap up this phase of the staff hierarchy by mid-end of May 2019. There is a lot of work to be done in a short period fo time and we ask for your continued support and prayers.
If you have any questions or concerns please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Staffing Task Force
Rev. Casey Thompson
Rev. Cheni Khonje