OUR PASTORAL TRANSITION
OUR PASTORAL TRANSITION
On June 12, 2022, our Rector Jordan Senner announced that, after much prayer and discernment, he has accepted a call to serve on the pastoral team of St. John’s Anglican Church in Vancouver, Canada. His last Sunday was August 21, 2022. While this transition comes with loss, we as a church family are confident that God is going to continue the good work that God has begun in us. Our Good Shepherd will call the right person to be our Rector for the next season of life and ministry.
We are committed to clarity and transparency as we navigate this pastoral transition together in Christ.
We have a 5-step process: preparing, searching, vetting, discerning, and confirming.
Preparing – Our Vestry goes on a retreat to pray and begin a series of conversations, in coordination with our Bishop, that will lead to the shaping of core documents: Church profile, Rector search profile and criteria, and Rector job description. These documents will be presented to the congregation, inviting questions and feedback.
Searching – We communicate about the job opportunity by personal word of mouth and in various venues, forming a list of candidates which will be approved by our Bishop, Todd Hunter, for the Vestry to consider.
Vetting – Our Vestry enters an initial vetting process based on education and experience, ministry training and vision, until the list is distilled down to a core group of qualified candidates that are invited into more intensive discernment process.
Discerning – Our Vestry discerns the leading of the Spirit through prayer, multiple levels of interviews, written answers to questions related to character, competency, vision and values for ministry, as well as checking personal and professional references. This culminates in an in-person visit and extending a formal job offer to a particular candidate.
Confirming – Once they accept, then there will be a confirmation process: background checks, psychological evaluation, marital evaluation, and the Bishop’s approval and reception into our diocese, Churches for the Sake of Others (C4SO).
If you would like to contact the Vestry for more information about the Rector search, please send an email to email@example.com.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- Who will be shepherding HTC during the transition?
Dr. Todd Pickett, a long-time member of HTC and campus pastor at Biola University, will lead HTC in preaching on Sundays, and our own clergy team will lead HTC in consistent sacramental celebration of what God has done for us in Christ.
Dr. Mike McNichols will be present for pastoral care and to support Vivian Brocato and Israel Kolade in their ministry operations. Our children and youth ministries, prayer ministries, adult discipleship classes, and missional communities will continue as planned.
- How do pastoral transitions work in Anglican churches?
In Anglican churches, Bishops are considered the chief under-shepherds of the flock. Their role is to set clear gospel vision and pastorally support the leadership of the local churches under their care.
In times of transition, the Bishop’s role is twofold: (1) work with the local church to appoint godly and wise interim pastoral oversight, and (2) encourage and guide the Vestry through the search process for a new Rector.
While the Bishop does have the final word in decision-making about pastoral leadership in the church, their primary posture is one of support and trust in the work of the Spirit through the Vestry’s search process at the local level.
- When will HTC have a new Rector?
We cannot predict with certainty how long the search process will take. The goal is to welcome a new Rector in early 2023.
- Will this transition change who we are and how we do things as a church?
The short answer is no. Anglican churches are designed to avoid being personality-centric churches. Their vision and values as well as their practices of worship, formation, and mission are not dependent on a single person. Yes, the Rector has a significant role in shaping the life of the local church, but they are not her source of life – only God is.
With deep and consistent roots in the historic church calendar, liturgy, spiritual practices, and modes of pastoral oversight, Anglican churches seek to give expression to the Gospel in ways that are missionally sensitive yet transcend any one person or culture. This is a stabilizing and reassuring gift in times of transition.
- How can I participate? How can I support and strengthen the life and ministries of HTC during this transition?
Every member of HTC has an important role to play in this transition. We are the body of Christ, and we are only healthy when everyone works together for the growth of the whole. (Eph. 4:1-16)
You can support and strengthen the life and ministries of HTC during this transition through practicing a life of presence, peace, and prayer.
Presence – Showing up matters. God’s people need to be together to worship, encourage, equip, pray, and enjoy life together in Christ. Make it a personal spiritual practice to be consistently present to God’s people in worship and on mission. Maybe even ask Vivian and Israel how you can practically partner with them in a ministry at HTC.
Peace – Pursue peace. We all experience and manage change differently, and we will need the stabilizing and unifying power of God’s peace to rule and reign in our hearts and minds. Make it a communal spiritual practice to pursue deep peace with God (John 14:26-27), with others (Eph. 4:1-3), and within yourself (Phil. 4:6-7).
Prayer – Prayer attunes us to the life and mission of God. Ultimately, this transition is about God and God’s work in the world. It is our privilege to participate in what God is doing. That begins with prayer. How may God be inviting you into a deeper life of prayer in this season?
If you have other questions, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are some ways you can pray for the pastoral transition at HTC:
- God would give us deep peace and joy in him.
- God would give the Vestry wisdom and unity in the Rector search process.
- God would stir in the heart of our next Rector, giving clarity and courage to follow God’s leading.
- God would protect and provide for the Senner family as they move and settle in Vancouver, Canada.
- God would give us confidence and courage in the gospel.
- God would continue to grow faith formation ministries and draw new members to our community.
- God would strengthen and bless our missional communities and partnerships.
- God would encourage and surround Vivian and Israel and all who give leadership at HTC with signs of God’s love and blessing.
- God would give our interim pastoral leadership wisdom and grace.
- God would continue to cultivate an others-oriented posture in the life of HTC.
- God would make each person at HTC feel seen, heard, and secure in God’s presence.
A member of our Vestry will be hosting a prayer gathering during the pastoral transition every Sunday at 2:00-2:20pm in the Junior High Room at Watermark. All are welcome!