Update, July 19, 2014: All five Leadership Team updates have been given now. Please see the links below to review them.
Over five consecutive Sundays in June and July, the pastors who oversee each of our Leadership Teams will briefly share their vision and ministry goals, and we’ll take time to pray for the work of their teams. This is an opportunity to hear how we’re seeking to advance our church’s mission this year in five key ministry areas.
None of the ministry areas are new to our church. What is new is that the responsibility to develop and execute a multi-year strategy for these ministry areas has been consolidated under the five Leadership Teams.
As the Sundays go by, we will post recaps of the leaders’ remarks here on the church blog and link to them below.
Share this on:
March 17 2014 at 8:03 pm 2 Comments
Church members: If you’re tracking your e-mail and this blog, you’ve seen some recent communication from me about the pastors retreat (see blog posts one, two and three). It was a fruitful time where the Lord met us and refreshed us. Thank you for praying!
One of our activities was evaluating the many recommendations we received for Non Staff Elders. As I shared earlier on this blog and in church this past Sunday, members of the congregation submitted 82 recommendations all told, and of those, 29 men, for a variety of reasons, asked not to continue in the process. That left 53 names for us to consider in light of the biblical qualifications, and we have invited 23 men to continue with the process.
We have already met with most of the 23 men and their wives and talked about the next steps of evaluation and training. They will let us know shortly whether they have decided to proceed or not.
As a pastoral team, we wanted to let you know we are not planning to publish the names of the 23 candidates at this time, as they are still deciding whether or not to pursue the process. Our heart is for them to be able to wait on the Lord without the pressure that might come from a lot of people inquiring. At the same time, we have encouraged the candidates to make their own decisions about whom to keep informed, whether they decide to continue or drop out of the process.
I want to invite you to pray for these men and their wives as they put this decision before the Lord. Please pray for God’s guidance and wisdom in this moment that is very important for their lives and for Covenant Life Church. We are grateful for God’s grace, goodness and help as we take these next steps to identify the men he is calling as shepherds for this flock!
The candidates who decide to pursue eldership will spend the next several months in the personal evaluation and training process. Then in August and September we will present them to you for your input, consideration, and affirmation.
Thank you again for your prayers and active participation!
Share this on:
March 12 2014 at 3:02 pm 0 Comments
We devoted Day 2 of our retreat to discussing the contents of a paper that was the combined work of Don DeVries, Kenneth Maresco, Kevin Rogers and Ben Wikner regarding the role and responsibilities of pastors. These men studied a number of Scriptures, read about a dozen books, and contacted several churches that we wanted to learn from.
Why invest time in this study? We’ve made it a priority because the nature of pastoral ministry—how we define the role and responsibilities of elders—has been central in many of our conversations with members over the last several years. We’ve received a lot of questions and criticism centered on this topic. So we wanted to examine Scripture (like the Bereans in Acts 17:11) to refresh our understanding and reset our vision regarding pastoral ministry in the church.
I am happy to report it’s been a very worthwhile and fruitful process. As a result of the paper and much prayer and discussion, we were able to articulate several themes that we plan to share more about in the months ahead:
We want to:
• Articulate and teach a definition of pastoral ministry that is biblically sound and succinct enough for us all to grasp and remember.
• Teach the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers and see its effect grow in our life and practice as a church. This doctrine affirms that each and every member of the body of Christ has the privilege of direct access to the Father through our High Priest Jesus Christ, and that every part of the body is called, gifted and needed for the good of the whole.
• Develop a multi-faceted approach to caring for members that includes care group participation, direct pastoral care for those in spiritual need, biblical and theological classes, counseling resources and ministries, training and equipping of care group leaders, and partnership with outside counseling agencies.
Again, there’s much work and discussion to move forward on these topics—and it all represents a great opportunity to equip the saints of Covenant Life for the work of the ministry!
Grace to you,
Share this on:
February 27 2014 at 3:55 pm 0 Comments
In case you weren’t able to make it, here’s the full video of our brief Members Meeting held on Sunday, February 23.
Share this on:
February 18 2014 at 1:53 pm 0 Comments
Thank you for praying and participating as our church walks through the process of nominating and choosing non-staff elders. We have received a large number of nominations, and it is clear from the supporting comments that members have taken the charge to nominate biblically qualified men very seriously.
As the nomination process has progressed, we have grown freshly aware of the grace of God on our church. God has indeed placed many biblically mature men in our midst who have selflessly served our congregation in many ways for a very long time. It is a great testimony to the kindness of God that we have many such men rather than too few!
The pastors will review the nominations on our retreat scheduled for February 25-28 and prayerfully select the men who seem at this time to be most qualified based on the relevant biblical passages (see our elder profile). We will also consider whether each man has demonstrated firm support for, and willingness and ability to teach, Covenant Life Church’s Statement of Faith. In addition we will be looking for men who share the vision and mission of Covenant Life Church, and who possess a history of fruitfulness in shepherding God’s people.
It is important to note that this is the only time non-staff elders will be chosen solely by the full-time pastoral staff. Hereafter, non-staff elders will be chosen by both the full-time pastors and the non-staff elders affirmed by the congregation.
Please pray that the Lord will lead the pastoral staff as we undertake the selection of this first group of non-staff elders. We want to proceed with sober judgment and hearts poised to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. Thank you again for your prayers and your engagement in these important matters.
On Behalf of the Elders
Share this on:
February 9 2014 at 12:26 am 0 Comments
With the deadline for recommending non-staff elder candidates just a week away, we wanted to repost the relevant information to make sure it’s readily accessible for everyone. If you’re not informed about this initiative, please follow the links below.
Doctrinally competent, godly leaders are critical to the health and well being of this and every church congregation. Over the course of 2014 we are engaging a process to bring non-staff pastor/elders on board at Covenant Life. This presents an opportunity for every member of the body to participate in the life and future of our church by praying, submitting recommendations and supporting the affirmation process. The final day for recommending candidates as non-staff elders is Sunday, February 16.
• You can review Kenneth Maresco’s letter from January 9 announcing the process
• Check out Ben Wikner’s and Kenneth’s sermons on elders
• Read the elder profile (describing elder qualifications and the nomination process).
• Recommend a member who meets the qualifications by using the simple recommendation form.
Thank you. members, for praying and playing your important role.
Share this on: