Pastor Nominating Committee Update

As many members of our Calvary community may have missed the Pastor Nominating Committee (PNC) updates in January during service and at the Annual Meeting in February, we thought it would be helpful to provide a written overview of the call process.

Please keep in mind that calling a new pastor is a months-long process; one that is undertaken with prayer, strict confidentiality out of respect for candidates, and deep discernment by both the PNC and potential candidates. (Spoiler alert: this means it’s going to take us awhile and that you won’t hear a lot from us during the search.)

Here’s an overview of the PNC process:

Phase 1: Interim Pastor & Head of Staff is called.

Aren’t we blessed to have the amazing Rev. Cal Chinn for our transitional pastor?!

Phase 2: Congregation conducts Mission Study.

Our Mission Study team did a fabulous job researching and crafting an in-depth picture of where Calvary is today and where we aspire to go. If you haven’t read the Mission Study, we encourage you to check it out by clicking here.

Phase 3: Church-wide Nominating Committee (CWNC) calls members of the congregation to be on the PNC and the congregation votes to approve.

What a great PNC team we have – thank you CWNC! Here’s the team: Jennifer Gee, Chair; Kimberly Pate, Secretary + Members Don Bear, Erin Dress, Jack Poindexter, Louise Lowry, Susan McMane, Travis Pearson, Will Bondurant.

Phase 4: The PNC searches for and selects the next Pastor & Head of Staff.

Headline: this is the part that takes a lot of time folks!

Steps in this process include:

  • Completing a Ministry Information Form (MIF) getting it approved by Session and SF Presbytery’s Committee on Ministry. The MIF is required by our denomination, the PC(USA). It describes Calvary and our ministries and aspirations as well as the qualities and skills needed to be successful in this role. Calvary’s MIF is a faithful reflection of our Mission Study and Calvary’s Mission, Vision & Values.
  • PNC shares the MIF through the PC(USA) website and other outlets as well as reaching out to a variety of networks to expand the pool of candidates.
  • PNC receives and reviews candidates’ Personal Information Forms, conducts multiple interviews, makes church visits, and undertakes references checks. Ongoing….
  • Presbytery conducts Suitability of Call interviews with both candidates and PNC.
  • PNC selects and extends the call to final nominee, negotiates the Terms of Call and a start date.

Phase 5: The congregation votes on and welcomes the new Pastor & Head of Staff.

  • Once the candidate has accepted, the PNC reports this to Session and Session calls a congregational meeting to elect the new Pastor & Head of Staff. Don’t worry, we’ll be sure to share ample information about the candidate before the meeting.
  • Presbytery approves the candidate and Terms of Call though approval of terms may also occur after the congregational vote.
  • The candidate preaches at Calvary and a congregational meeting is held to elect the pastor. 
  • New pastor transitions into her/his new role – Yeah!

I bet by now, you’re wondering what you can do to support the PNC, right? Thank you for asking. Here’s what you can do:

  1. Pray, pray, pray. Pray for our PNC team…often! We feel honored to be on the PNC, but it’s a long process and we need your support. Pray also for the person that God is calling to Calvary. None of us know who that is yet, but God surely does. Pray that she or he will hear God’s voice and be prepared in body, mind and spirit to lead us in faith and discipleship into the future. Pray also for Calvary – that we will be ready to welcome the leadership of a new pastor.
  2. Refer candidates. Seriously, we know many of you have contacts in other medium to large churches around the country or you travel and worship in other places. So, if you have a great candidate to suggest send their name and info to us at
  3. PLEDGE! Why? Because the candidates we’ll be engaging with will ask how our congregation shows its commitment through our financial gifts. Your pledge is a sign of your commitment to our community and it’s a major signal to pastors who are talking with us about the health and vitality of Calvary. So, if you haven’t yet, please pledge by clicking here. If you have already pledged, thank you so very much! It will make a big difference in supporting our work to find a world-class preacher and strong leader who is the very best fit for Calvary!

Have questions? Feel free to ask any member of the PNC. Please note; however, to maintain confidentiality, we need to limit ourselves to answers about the process and not discuss any candidates who may be involved. We are also more than happy to listen to members’ input and hopes for how our new pastor can best serve God with Calvary’s community of faith.