Pastoral Search Committee FAQs

CBC Senior Pastor Search Process

Frequently Asked Questions


Q. How soon will we have a new pastor on board?

A.  The Search Committee is working diligently to bring a new pastor to CBC. Our search firm, Slingshot Group, indicates that it will take a minimum of 6 months to find our next pastor. If the early candidate pool turns out to be less than satisfactory, it could take longer. Because we are looking for the candidate the Lord has already picked out for us, we are working efficiently and prudently toward uncovering that person. However, we don’t want to unduly rush the process in our human concern for getting someone on board, missing the Lord’s cues in the process. 


Q.   When will we get started with the search process?

A.    We have already begun; even with the approaching Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, we moved quickly to get the search process underway. The Leadership Council appointed and commissioned the search committee, and then identified and contracted with a very good search firm to assist us. Given holiday interruptions, and our collective availability, we set the dates for the search firm’s onsite visit in late January. These dates put us into a good time frame for finding a new senior pastor. Slingshot assures us that by beginning in January, we are getting into the process during the best time of the hiring season. 


Q.   Why are we hiring a search firm to help us in finding a new pastor?

A.    The Search Committee will be leading and managing the search and review process for finding a new senior pastor. The Leadership Council hired a search firm to assist the committee in order to give us a much broader reach for candidates than we would be able to do for ourselves. The search firm will get to know Calvary Baptist by coming to our church in January for a site visit. The firm will lend its professional expertise and knowledge to help us find the best candidates and then help us vet and compare candidates and their credentials.

Slingshot has a stellar reputation in their field: they are a not-for-profit organization staffed primarily by former pastors, and they have an excellent reputation with the churches they have assisted.  The Slingshot Group will serve as our agent in the process and as a staff extension to the Search Committee, freeing the committee to concentrate on the core work of examining and comparing candidates to find the best fit the Lord has in mind for us.


Q. When will the search firm visit our church?         

A.  Slingshot will be at Calvary on January 27 and 28, 2018, for two days of extensive meetings and interviews. The results of that visit will be used to prepare the church profile and candidate profile we will use in the search process, as well as the material needed for the position announcement.


Q. Why do we have a Search Committee of nine members? Why not just have the deacons conduct the search for a new pastor? Who makes the final decision?

A. The leadership Council (which includes the deacons) wanted to insure some breadth of representation from among the members of the congregation on any committee charged with finding a new senior pastor. Consequently, they formed a sub-committee containing three deacons and six congregants. The Search Committee will make a recommendation to the Leadership Council of a preferred candidate. The Leadership Council will make a recommendation to our church about our new pastor.  


Q.   What will the Search Committee do in January prior to Slingshot’s site visit?  

A.    During January, the Search Committee will be preparing for the site visit and providing Slingshot with data to help it prepare for the onsite visit.  We will be answering Slingshot’s detailed questionnaire about the nature and history of our church, identifying the strengths of our church and the challenges it faces, helping Slingshot prepare the church and candidate profiles to be used in the search process, organizing the onsite Slingshot visit, and completing other tasks.


Q.   If I know of a possible candidate for the job, how do I make his name known? What do I tell him? 

A.    If you know of a candidate you would like to have considered, please make their names known to a member of the search committee, rather than to the pastors or the deacons. By having one “place” to go with names of possible candidates, we insure that nobody gets inadvertently missed in the process. The committee will keep these expressions of interest (and their resumes, if submitted) on file, and they will be notified when the application process begins. When Slingshot opens the application process, these interested candidates will still need to submit the required application materials to Slingshot using the firm’s online portal. This insures that all applicants are considered equally, and that the firm and the committee are properly and fairly comparing candidates.


Q.   What role will our current pastors play in the search process?

A.    Our pastors will play an important role in the process: they will be interviewed by the search firm, advise the Search Committee, review the candidates’ theological backgrounds, and help interview the candidates. Though the search committee will make its own recommendation to the Leadership Council, ultimately, the pastors as members of that council will have a role in recommending the final candidate. The structure of this process has been set up so that the search committee and the leadership council can come as close as possible to unity in identifying God’s choice for us.


Q.   Will the Hamilton campus be involved in the search process?

A.  Hamilton is as involved in the search process as the Holland campus. Isaac De Haan, a member of the Hamilton campus, is a member of the search committee and a new deacon. Tom Wright and Isaac DeHaan will represent Hamilton as members of the CBC Leadership Council. Slingshot will conduct a focus group with representatives of the Hamilton campus during the site visit in late January.


Q.   Will you be gathering any input from the general members of the congregation who are not on the search committee? Will we get to meet and hear the candidates?

A.    Representatives of the general congregation will have input into the process during the Slingshot Group’s visit with us in January. We will also work to give the congregation adequate opportunity to interact with one or more finalists, though how that will happen has not yet been determined by the Leadership Council.


Q.   What does the committee need from me as a member of the congregation?

A.    We need your encouragement during the heavy load of work the search will entail. We need your constant prayers. And, we need your support for a spirit of unity within the congregation in finding and embracing the Lord’s choice for our next Senior Pastor.