In this significant season of our church's transition journey, we understand that you may have questions. Below are some questions we have anticipated with our responses. It is our prayer that these are helpful to you as you consider your role as part of the COC family in the selection of our next Senior Pastor.  We will be adding to these as we get further into the process.

The process will start in January 2019 with opening nominations for the board of Elders. Once that process is compete in June, a search committee will be formed and begin their work. Currently, Pastor Bob, is looking to retire in September of 2020. The search process might take longer than that in the Lord's timing.

It will be important to be patient as we proceed with the search process as we look to follow the Lord's leading. The search team's job is be thorough and carefully considerate as we look for our the next Pastor the Lord has prepared and is calling to COC.

The search team will meet regularly to review and discuss potential candidates. They will have an established process to ensure that potential candidates are carefully reviewed and that the Team is aligned before proceeding to any next steps. The Team will review any documents submitted, request additional background information we need, listen to sermons, and have conversations with the potential candidate.

The exact composition of the search team is still being developed by the board of Elders. It will be comprised of members, both men and women, or various ages and backgrounds. At least one Elder will be on the search team. No current staff members will be on the team, although they will be involved in later parts of the search and candidating process.

Yes, the Board of Elders has consulted with our denomination leadership at the EFCA West, particularly Bob Osborne, regarding the plan for the search process. Bob has helped shepherd many churches through leadership transitions.

Yes, absolutely! The “Candidate Referral Form” for referring someone as a potential candidate to the Pastor Search Team will be available on this website once the search process has begun.

The Pastor Search Team will determine through interviews, research, and the Holy Spirit’s leading that a prospective pastor candidate is a viable “fit” for COC. The Team will then recommend this pastor to the Elder Board for their review. Upon initial approval of the Elder Board, the process will continue onto next steps, including meetings with the COC staff and candidating in front of the congregation.

“Candidating” is the final step of the search process. After the Elder Board has decided to move forward with bringing a candidate to COC, the church body will have opportunities to meet our Pastor Next candidate and hear him preach. To protect the privacy and current ministries of all potential candidates, the Pastor Search Team will not discuss any recognizable candidate information with the church until the candidating process begins. The Pastor Search Team will continue making regular announcements about where they are in the search process through announcements in the church services and other COC communication.

As stated in our governing documents, "Full-time Pastors will be nominated and affirmed by the Board of Elders and approved by the membership in a duly called meeting." So the final choice and calling of our next Senior Pastor will be made first by approval of the Elder Board and then approval by 2/3rd vote of the membership. There will be a period of time to interact with any Pastor Next candidate during the “candidating” portion of the process (see Question 8).

Please pray for our church body, staff, Elder Board, and Pastor Search Team to be unified and strong during this time of transition. Pray that we stay focused on the work the Lord has called us to do as the church — to reach the lost in our community for Christ. Please also pray for the work the Lord is doing both in our church and in the life of our next Senior Pastor to prepare us for this next season. Prayer requests and updates on the search process can be found in our church bulletin and on our website and other church communications (emails, etc).

If you have other questions once we get further into the process you can submit them to the Search Team by email at pst@churchofthecanyons.org.