Extension of Covenant Ministry and Pastoral Discernment Process

Extension of Covenant Ministry and Pastoral Discernment Process

At their meeting on July 9, the Elders approved the extension of the Covenant Ministry agreement with Michael Caine to cover the period of the pastoral discernment process that will begin in August.

The Elders also took the following action with regard to the pastoral discernment process:

~ Approved the formation of the Pastoral Discernment Task Force. The group will solicit feedback from members of the Old First congregation regarding Michael’s becoming the congregation’s settled pastor through the issuing of a formal call. The task force will sponsor four open meetings following worship in September and October at which members of the congregation can share their views regarding Michael’s assuming the role of settled pastor. In addition, the task force will schedule a separate meeting with the youth of the church to get their views on Michael’s leadership of the church.

~ The membership of the Discernment Task Force, along with contact information for the group’s members, will be made available in early August to the congregation, and members of the congregation who wish to share their views with the task force in private or in confidence may contact directly a member of the task force to schedule an individual meeting or to share feedback via telephone or email.

~ Members may also contact Elders who are not on the task force to share their views on Michael’s continued leadership of the church. Information provided in one-on-one conversations with task force members or with Elders will treated as confidential and will only be shared with the task force and the Elders.

~ The members of the task force will also meet with Michael to discuss with him his vision for the continuation of the revitalization process and his leadership of the congregation in that process and in all other facets of pastoral leadership for the church.

~ Based on its deliberations on the information collected, the Pastoral Discernment Task Force will make a report to the Elders that will include a recommendation as to whether Michael should become our settled pastor.

~ Established the timeline for the discernment process:

August 1 through October 20th – Members of Old First are encouraged to share their views on Michael’s becoming the settled pastor of Old First with members of the Pastoral Discernment Task Force or with any one of the Elders through one-on- one meetings, telephone conversations, or email.

September and October – Four open meetings will be held following worship during which members can share their views on Michael’s becoming the settled pastor for Old First – the dates for these meetings are Sept. 16, Sept. 30, Oct. 7, Oct. 21. One additional meeting will be held with the church’s youth to gather their input. During this period, members are also encouraged to share their observations on Michael’s leadership through one-on-one meetings, telephone conversations, or email with task force members or with any one of the Elders.

October 29th – The Pastoral Discernment Task Force makes it report to the Board of Elders.

Sunday, November 18th, following worship – A congregational meeting will be held to consider the recommendation of the Elders regarding pastoral leadership following their consideration of the report of the Pastoral Discernment Task Force. If the Elders make a recommendation that Michael should become our settled pastor, there will be a vote of the congregation at this meeting to issue to Michael a formal call to become Old First’s pastor.

Any member of the congregation with questions or concerns about this process is encouraged to contact the moderator of the Elders, Steve Wilhite, at scw0001@verizon.net.

Faithfully submitted,

Steve Wilhite