Posted by Jim Drake on Thursday, July 22, 2010
It came across Facebook last week. "Think I could help my church without a pastor?" I'm thinking someone is reading my mail or something. Actually it was a friend in ministry who is going through the same thing I am (a pastoral transition--my 3rd here and 8th overall) It piqued my curiosity so I click on this link and found a blogger who expresses well what it's like to go through a pastoral transition. I've been hooked ever since.
Jeremy does an excelled job of capturing the thoughts and feelings of a second-chair (staff not in the pastor position) leader in the absence of a pastor. He asks the question "who leads the church?" during this time. For some churches it's clear; there is an established order for things to go. For other churches, it's not so clear and there is a momentary power grab ( I like to call it the Indians running into the teepee and bang the war drum!) This can be a confusing time for all (church and staff).
What I think Jeremy has done has opened the door to the discussion of pastoral succession in our churches. We need to have a "hit by the bus" plan in place (what happens when the pastor leaves) and have that envelope ready and implemented when the time comes. Prayerfully that won't come too often but it's better to be prepared than to wander in the wilderness of an interim time.
This blog has the makings of a book, and I've told Jeremy that he's hit upon something that needs to be explored.