Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Two New Pastors

Last night we had a very special Elder Board Meeting for several reasons. First, it was the first time we met as an Elder Board in the new Café Conference Room.

Second, after hearing reports from Rick Bernhardt regarding our Educational Ministries, and Steve Burghart, regarding our Connect Ministry, we took care of a few business items and then enjoyed taking communion together as an Elder Board. This included a time of washing each other’s feet celebrating the fact that we have a Savior who daily cleanses us from our sin. It also included a pizza love feast in celebration of the that day when we will be part of that great Marriage Supper of the Lamb in heaven. It also included the bread and the cup as we remembered and proclaimed that past sacrifice of Jesus for our sins on the cross.

The third item that made our Elder meeting special was that one of the business items we took care of was voting to officially license two of our young staff members to the pastoral ministry. This included Eric Lewis, who is our Spiritual Life Director and High School Bible Teacher at Lititz Christian School, and Doug Kegarise, who is our Director of Student Ministries here at Grace Church. Both of these men have proven themselves to our ministry over the last several years. After filling out a lengthy 12-page application form, they both, individually, went through a very rigorous oral examination in front of our four pastors (myself, Pastor Whitie; Pastor Tim and Pastor Steve). The pastoral staff then recommended to the Elders that we recognize these two men as licensed pastors.

What does this mean? It means that we as a church are putting our stamp of approval on them recognizing their call and ability to conduct pastoral ministry. This will also allow them to have the privilege of legally performing pastoral duties such as officiating weddings. We are very excited about both Doug and Eric.

Eric’s role will continue to be one of shepherding at our school and will not include being an official Elder of our church. As a result, the congregation will not need to vote on Eric’s licensure. These credentials are given to him in his shepherding role at Lititz Christian School among our students, faculty, staff and parents.

Doug’s role, however, will be one of an official pastor/elder here at Grace Church. His pastoral oversight will extend over all of our children’s and youth ministries here at the church. Because Doug will be an official pastor/elder of our church, the church constitution requires that the congregation vote on Doug. This vote will take place on Sunday morning, January 10th.

For all of those reasons, last night’s Elder Meeting was very exciting and fulfilling. Please continue to pray for our Elder Board as we enter 2010 and please be praying for Eric and Doug as they continue their ministry with us here at Grace Church and Lititz Christian School.


Anonymous said...

I vote YES, YES, a thousand times YES! Doug is a such a gift to our ministries at Grace. I count it a privilege to know him and to be serving HIM with him.

Mona Graham

Nelson said...

Praise the Lord for both of Doug and Eric for their willingness to follow their calling by the Lord!

The process of their ministry validation is bibical and now we as the congregation need to prayerfuly affirm their bibical leadership to their respected ministry and sheparding at Grace.

Loook forward to Jan. 10th to enjoy this vital leadership confirmation!

Thanks to our Pastoral Team for their guidence in thier life.

Pastor Scott said...

Thanks Nelson and Mona. I agree with each of you 1,000%!!!

Anonymous said...

This is great to hear about the two new pastors in the church. One question though, why wasn't the congregation informed and able to vote on this issue?

Anonymous said...

I do appologize, I did not read the whole post.

Pastor Scott said...

No problem, Anonymous. Based on the church constitution, the congregation must vote on all new Elders/pastors. Doug's official role as pastor/Elder in our church does not start until the congregation has approved the recommendation of the Elder Board. This vote will take place on Sunday morning, January 10th. Because Eric's licensure deals only with his shepherding role at Lititz Christian School there is not a need for the congregation to vote on him.