Pastoral Transition

A season of pastoral transition is ripe with possibility and peril. A congregation in the midst of transition experiences spurts of energy countered by periods of malaise; creativity accompanied by stymying conflict; and hope in tension with grief. In short, the transition season is confusing!

Our work during pastoral transition can help your leaders negotiate a smooth transition and create a healthy new beginning. Here are some of the ways in which we can help:

  • Educate congregation leaders about the dynamics of change during a time of pastoral transition (ending, neutral zone, new beginnings).
  • Nurture discernment practices among leaders.
  • Support the search committee and governing body as they define a process for congregational self-study and reflection.
  • Guide congregation leaders as they clarify congregational identity, community context, and mission/vision for the next chapter of congregational life.
  • Support congregation leaders as they identify gifts, skill sets, characteristics and experiences desired in the next pastor, as well as an accurate description of the position being filled.
  • Support the staff team as they renegotiate roles and behavioral norms during each stage of the transition process.
  • Support the governing body as they identify and strengthen behavioral norms in the areas of communication, decision-making, conflict management, handling of complaints, and leadership.
  • Guide congregation leaders and the new pastor in the creation of an effective entry strategy.
  • Help the congregation bring healthy closure to its pastoral relationship with the departing pastor.