Our Current Status – April 2016
We have developed an innovative model for addressing the need for an Interim Pastor Head of Staff, and have the concurrence of the Presbytery’s Committee on Ministry to implement this model, and as of this date, we have the model underway.
The model is to move our Associate Pastor Rev. Nancy Ross-Zimmerman to Acting Head of Staff, Hire a Temporary Pastor of Visitation, and hire “Interim Facilitators” to guide us through the Discovery process and typical “Interim Tasks” associated with the Interim Pastor Position.
As of this update Nancy is fully in the position of Sr. Pastor HOS, and the Interim Facilitators, Valerie Hershberger and Ron Cowgill, are fully engaged in the process. We are still working to announce who will be engaged as our Visitation Pastor.
As of this update, the Interim Search Committee has been disbanded, and the Interim Facilitators and the Discovery Team will provide future updates in our search for a new Senior Pastor Head of Staff. However, co-chairs of the Interim Search Committee have continued on as liaison between our Interim Facilitators, Valerie Hershberger and Ron Cowgill, and Session. They will continue in the liaison role throughout the Discovery process.
September 15, 2015 Update
The Interim Search Team continues to meet weekly and has conducted first and second round interviews with a number of candidates. Next steps may include a third interview with our top candidates followed by a visit to Northminster. Please keep our candidates and our work together in your prayers.
August, 18, 2015 Update
Your Interim Pastor Search Team (IPST), continues to meet on Monday evenings, reviewing PIF’s (the Personal Information Form submitted by pastors interested in our position), and ranking the applicants. At this point we have heard from almost 46 applicants from at least 20 states ranging from Ohio and Kentucky, to South Dakota and Montana. We have created an Interview Guide and a Candidate Log which allows each member of our Search Team to calibrate and assess all of the candidates together and compare new applicants as they are received. Rev. Jim DiEgidio, the General Presbyter of the Cincinnati Presbytery has offered to serve as our Presbytery liaison. We have also contacted a few congregations in our Presbytery to learn how they completed a similar process.
Please continue to pray for God’s will to be discerned by your IPST and for the right candidate to be drawn to Northminster by the Holy Spirit. God is good! All the time!
Doug Smucker and Scott Steel, co-chairs, Claire Dingle, Laura McGrath, Ben Tuttle, John Williams
July 24, 2015 Update
At present, the IPST has submitted the (MIF) to the Committee on Ministry of the Cincinnati Presbytery and our MIF has been approved. (Hallelujah!) The MIF, the Interim Pastor Position Description and Interim Contract now go to the Northminster Session for their approval. Once the Session has approved all documents our IPST will be uploaded on the Church Leadership Connection (CLC) website. Our documents can also be shared directly with others who may be potential candidates. If you have questions about the process or know of someone who might be interested in learning about our search, please email Doug Smucker or Scott Steel. ( , or ).
What can a Congregation Expect from an Interim Pastor? (from the PCUSA website)
Like all pastors, Interim Pastors offer to the congregations they serve:
* Worship leadership and preaching;
* Pastoral care;
* Work with the session to provide for the life and ministry of the congregation;
* Administrative work including supervision of staff
*Staff support for programs and committees of the congregation
In addition, an Interim Pastor leads a congregation during the transition time after an installed pastor has departed, helping the congregation prepare to welcome the leadership of a new installed pastor. Interim Pastors understand the dynamics of a congregation in transition, including feelings of grief, loss, and, sometimes, relief or anger. Interim pastors will help the session provide for continuity of essential programs, and may assist the session in assessing needs for changes in programs and ministries of the congregation. Some interim pastors have special skills and experience that can help a congregation recover from a time of conflict or after the disclosure of clergy sexual misconduct or other trauma.
Ordinarily, an interim pastor is not eligible to serve as the next installed pastor, or co-pastor, or associate pastor of the congregation (G-2.0504c). The interim pastor may, if the session and the Committee on Ministry approve, work with the session in a mission study or assist the Pastor Nominating Committee in gathering data for the writing of the Church Information Form. With those possible exceptions, the interim pastor may not be involved in the work and discernment of the PNC. A good interim pastor will “hit the ground running,” beginning his/her time with the congregation with intensity and energy, and will leave with intentionality, engaging in a “good goodbye” with the congregation and its staff.
A good interim pastor is fully present with the congregation from the beginning, and really leaves when she/he leaves.
Check this link for a list of the “Players” and steps involved in this process. For more details refer to the “Calling a Pastor Checklist in COM File Cabinet on the Cincinnati Presbytery website