Monday, April 23, 2018

Senior Pastor Call Committee


Call Committee Fall Update

October 8, 2017

Elizabeth Seely (Call Committee Chair) gives an update on the Search Process:


Congregation approved the Call Committee on February 5, 2017

  • Have been meeting for about 7 months

  • Call Charter with candidate criteria – available on myUALC portal

  • 23 meetings to date – it has not been a burden, good meetings

March – April:

  • Direction from NALC Bishop Bradosky and David Wendel – very helpful!

  • Team formation/developed their process and guidelines for discernment

    • They pray until they reach unity.

  • Developed first/second interview questions

  • Crafted UALC profile document for NALC/LCMC

May – September:

  • Reviewed candidate resumes/profiles from NALC, LCMC and congregant-supplied (~25 considered)

  • Conducted first interviews (3)

  • Conducted second interview/in-person visit (1) with Call Committee & Executive Committee w/spouses

  • Candidate withdrew for reasons unrelated to UALC

  • Evaluated external church staffing search firms (2), narrowed to one

  • Engaged professional search firm to assist in process – Vanderbloemen (a Christian firm that works exclusively in church searches; used to hire Communications Director).

  • Search consultant visited UALC on October 1 to worship and meet with the Call Committee

  • Project to have a candidate "short list" by early 2018 (mid-January)

  • Advantages of using a search consultant

    • Identify pastors who may not be presently looking for positions

    • Buffer of confidentiality for candidates – as an independent third party

    • Candidates inside OR outside NALC

    • Faster and more thorough process for finding candidates

  • Decision-making and discernment remains with the Call Committee and congregation.

  • A key verse for them – Psalm 27:14, "Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."


Update at Congregational Meeting

April 23, 2017

On behalf of the entire Call Committee, I want share what a privilege and a blessing it is serve the congregation in discernment of God’s call for our next Senior Pastor. Thank you for the trust you have placed in us. Read full update.


Call Committee Update

On behalf of the entire Call Committee, I want share what a privilege and a blessing it is serve the congregation in discernment of God’s call for our next Senior Pastor. Thank you for the trust you have placed in us.

Since the ratification of the committee at the February congregational meeting, we have met five times—our sixth meeting is this Tuesday.

In and between our meetings, we have been in prayer and devotion surrounding this process. We have received the Charter for the Call Committee, which is a document prepared by the Church Council with two primary purposes: (1) to provide information regarding Upper Arlington Lutheran Church to members of the Call Committee and to potential candidates for the position of Senior Pastor, and (2) to give guidelines to the Call Committee regarding the desired qualifications and capabilities of candidates we should be seeking for this position.

I would specifically like you to know that this call charter document incorporates the feedback received from you and other members of the congregation at the February congregational meeting. Specifically you all indicated strong support for a candidate who stands out in the areas of integrity, strong relational skills, and effective communication, as well as being an exceptional team builder and an inspirational and encouraging leader. Thank you for sharing this feedback—your input has been very helpful.

If you are interested in reading the Call Charter document, it can be accessed on-line at myUALC (which is available to all members) or by request from the church office.

The Call Committee, along with the Council, has meet with the Bishop of the North American Lutheran Church (NALC), Bishop John Bradowsky, in person for prayer and to receive the Bishop’s guidance in this process. We have also reviewed the NALC call process manual and had a detailed discussion of the process with the Bishop’s Assistant, Pastor David Wendell. As a member of the NALC, we will be following the NALC process in accordance with our constitution. So as a committee, we have completed NALC process documents, organized ourselves for the work ahead, and determined functional roles for each committee member. And again, we have spent time in the Scriptures and in prayer, including coming to a common understanding as a committee of what it means to have a discernment process through prayer, thanks to an excellent paper on the subject by Pastor Dave Mann.

I want to specifically thank those of you who have been in prayer for the committee and our work, in particular Gary Rutherford and the Men2Men group who has provided the committee with a wonderfully rich compilation of Scriptures that they have discerned through prayer to support us in our work.

As we enter the next phase of the committee’s work, it will be a confidential process. We cannot share who we are talking with or where they may currently be serving. I hope you understand this need for confidentiality, both the sake of candidates as well as their congregations, and for ourselves. I humbly request that you not put yourself or other members of the committee in an uncomfortable situation by asking questions we cannot or should not answer. We ask for your trust as we listen to the leading of the Lord and for your prayers that God will be working in the heart and life of the pastor He wishes to call as our next senior pastor, your prayers that the pastor be open to the working of the Holy Spirit, and your prayers that the committee will hear God’s voice with clarity and be full of peace as we make decisions.

However, even though we need to keep our process confidential, we will still provide regular updates and we want to hear from you. If you have a Scripture to share, an encouragement, or a suggestion for a candidate, please feel free to send those to Your support in this regard is very much appreciated.

Finally, a word about timing—the call process is a first and foremost a spiritual process of discernment led by the Holy Spirit. It is God’s process and it’s about the revealing of God’s will, not completing the process as quickly as possible. Rest assured, we will be organized and purposeful, but are also mindful of Psalm 27: “Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; yea, wait for the Lord!”

Thank you for your continued support and prayer.

Elizabeth Seely
Chair, Senior Pastor Call Committee



Call Committee Charter Published

February 25, 2017

The Church Council published the Charter for Call Committee to Select a New Senior Pastor. The purposes of this document are (1) to provide information regarding Upper Arlington Lutheran Church (UALC) to members of the Call Committee and potential candidates for the position of Senior Pastor at UALC; and (2) guidelines to the Call Committee regarding the qualifications and capabilities of candidates suited for this position. This charter can be found online in the myUALC portal.


Senior Pastor Call Committee Elected

February 5, 2017

The congregation unanimously ratified the election of the following members to the Senior Pastor Call Committee: Elizabeth Seely (Chair), Howard Greene (Vice-Chair), Molly Auseon, Maddie Benson, Brett Harper, Charlie Oellermann, Dan Overmyer, Steve Rish, and Stacy Schad.


Informational Meeting on Senior Pastor Transition

January 8, 2017

The Church Council held an informational meeting at Mill Run to answer questions and concerns about some of the recent transitions at UALC. The congregation split into break-out groups to pray and give feedback to the Council about qualities desired in a Senior Pastor candidate.