Kathy Nice Recent Discoveries.

Dear Friends,
As I have been helping to screen possible new pastors to serve in our presbytery, I’m noticing a few things. I wonder if you might be curious about these things.
First, there are few pastors for the number of churches that are looking for pastors. Each pastoral candidate is getting requests from nearly a dozen churches, each offering similar things: a friendly congregation, a lovely place to live/raise a family/exciting thing nearby, salary and benefits that are acceptable. So, what sets a church apart? HOSPITALITY and AUTHENTICITY.
Second, quite a few churches are hoping to find a professional Christian, someone who will do the work of the church FOR the congregation instead of WITH the congregation. I actually saw a ministry information form (not from this presbytery) that said the pastor would mow the church lawn while mowing the lawn of the manse. Now, for a pastor who likes yard work, which might really speak to him or her. Except that the rest of the duties included way more work than a typical pastor could do in forty plus hours a week, so obviously the lawncare was above and beyond the regular work week?
Finally, we are so used to our own backyard that we aren’t very good at selling it to others. I once moved to an area with beautiful mountain-scapes because it was so picturesque. When I moved back closer to “home” I realized that there were beautiful mountains there also! Why had I not noticed? Because I was used to the familiar, I didn’t recognize what it would mean to outsiders. We need to look again at what we have to offer, so that we can clearly describe our ministry context to those applying.
We have a chance to show possible pastors the value of serving a church in the Presbytery of Scioto Valley. And even if your congregation isn’t searching right now, someone else’s is. Let’s figure out how we can support one another. Help each other to see the good things that they do, so they are reminded and can claim it as part of their congregation’s identity.
God is good, and God is faithful. Let’s all pray for more faithful pastors to come and serve our churches.
In Christ’s service,

The Rev. Kathy Nice
Transitional General Presbyter