In January of 2006 our church will be holding another It's Your Call emphasis. It's Your Call is a recruitment programme aimed at encouraging members of our synod to consider a vocation as an ordained or diaconal minister. Members of your congregation will again be asked to nominate individuals within whom they discern the gifts, and perhaps the call, to ordained or diaconal ministry.
One key component in this process is having follow-up interviews with the individuals who have been nominated, and this is where we need your help! We are asking you to conduct the follow-up interviews and then, with their permission, to forward the completed Interview Form to your synod office by March 1, 2006.
- When you have received the Nomination Forms we invite you to spend some time in prayer, thanking God for the gifts of those persons who have been nominated and asking for God's presence to be with you during the interview process. Remember, if you received nominations for a candidate from another congregation, forward the nominations to their home pastor.
- Phone and set up appointments for the interviews. Begin by informing the individual that she/he has been nominated by a member of the congregation as a possible candidate for ordained or diaconal ministry and that you would like to meet to discuss this with her/him. In the case of children or youth that have been nominated, parents should be advised of the nomination and be present during the interview.
- Refer to the candidate's profile that lists some of the gifts that help make good ordained and diaconal ministers. Discuss with the individual what gifts they believe God has given them. Ask about how they feel God is acting in their lives. Ask about their relationship with God. Ask them if they have ever considered or felt called to be a pastor or diaconal minister. You might also want to ask if there are areas at church where they would like to be involved.
- Share with the person some of your own joys in ministry. What pastoral tasks do you enjoy? What has been rewarding to you? How have you seen others grow in faith? When was a time when you felt you really made a difference in someone's life?
- Refer to the brochure What Is A Call to Ministry? to help you explain the differences between ordained and diaconal ministry. Ask the candidate if they feel more called or equipped for ordained or diaconal ministry.
- Ask for permission to share their names with the synod office and the seminary. Explain that they would receive contacts and information on an occasional basis from the synod or the seminary.
- Close the interview with prayer, thanking God for the time together, for the gifts God has given the nominee, and for the opportunity to discuss the work of the church with this person.
- Following the interview(s), please fill out one Interview Form for each person you have interviewed. Please photocopy additional forms as needed. All Interview Forms should then be sent to your synod bishop by March 1, 2006.
Thank you in advance for participating in this very important emphasis. The task of recruiting future ordained and diaconal ministers is certainly a responsibility we share with all of God's people. May God grant us generous gifts of insight and wisdom as we share in this important work of discernment.