In general these are the steps for calling a pastor, however, each congregation has its own constitution and by-laws to which they must adhere. The District Office and Circuit Visitor desire to be a partner with each congregation to work through this process.
When a congregation experiences the departure of one of its pastors, or desires to expand its pastoral staff, there are people who will share their help and experience with the congregation. Look especially to the following:
The District President
The District president assists the congregation with two special responsibilities.
- Helping the congregation plan well as it seeks to enhance its mission and ministry.
- Supervising the process by which the congregation calls another pastor.
The Circuit Visitor
The Circuit Visitor has been elected by the congregations of your circuit and ratified by the convention of the Florida-Georgia District. He will serve as the District president’s on-the-scene representative and is available to advise you. The District treasury covers his expenses. Specifically, the circuit advisor helps in these ways:
- Helps the call committee to assess the needs and opportunities of the parish, in cooperation with the current pastoral leadership, as appropriate.
- Actively assists the congregation in identifying resources.
- Attends meetings relating to the calling of a pastor as the representative of the District president.
- Attends meetings of the church council and/or voters’ assembly as requested by the District president or as he deems necessary.
- Assists in the arrival and installation of the new pastor, as requested.
Recommended Steps in the Pastoral Call Process
- Establish the Call Committee and Calling Procedure
- Complete necessary documents as supplied by the District Office, which include a congregational profile and self study.
- Receive nominations for the office of Pastor
- Publish the list of nominees to the congregation and forward them to the District President
- Return a list of candidates to the congregation for election
- Gathering additional information
- Publish the call list and establish the date and rules of procedure for the call service.
- Immediately notify the pastor elect of his selection, send the proper call documents and arrange for a post call visit
- After acceptance, plan for arrival, installation and ongoing mutual ministry