Transitional Tasks Details

The Five Transitional Tasks

The Five Transitional Tasks identify key issues that need to be addressed during the interim period.  The Interim Pastor can choose the particular subjects that need to be addressed in the church he is serving.  He may also discover additional issues that need attention; he can then bring these tasks into this process.  The interim pastor is encouraged to choose the most relevant issues, prioritize and bring these to the Transition Team.

 1.     Coming to Terms with History – Reviewing the History of the Church

  • Discover what God has been doing in our church
  • Review all aspects of the ministry – good – not so good – bad – struggles
  • Identify who we are – How we came to be what we are and do what we do
  • Conduct a Church Health Survey
  • Develop a Church profile – people – ministry
  • Identify unresolved issues from throughout the history of the church
  • Identify current issues the church needs to deal with
  • Are there conflicts, relationship strains, people leaving – Why?
  • Resolve and reconcile as needed – individuals, congregation, former pastors
  • Identify strengths, weaknesses of the church, past and present
  • Identify the strengths and weaknesses of former pastors
  • Identify challenges the church has faced, past, present – successes – failures
  • Identify ministries, collect statistics from the past & present
  • Ask, What makes us happy about the church? – What makes us sad?
  • Celebrate what God has done throughout history and currently.

2.     Examining Leadership and Organizational Needs

  • Are there conflicts between leaders or between leaders and the former pastor?
  • Are there people who exercise power and control within the church? Do they use this for good? What is the reason for their power? Money? Position? Family?
  • Does the congregation respect the current church leaders and the direction they are leading the church?
  • Has there been a change of leadership with the change of pastors?  Why?
  • What was the leadership style of the most recent pastor, former pastors?
  • What is the leadership style of the current board?
  • What has been the primary leadership style evidenced in the history of the church?
  • Define the current leadership structure of the church.
  • Is our leadership structure effective for today’s ministry?
  • What kind of leadership structure will serve us best for the future?
  • Do we need to make changes in leadership structure and style to improve effectiveness?
  • How can we best develop leaders for our future?
  • What kind of leadership development strategy do we need?
  • How do we make decisions on the board level, congregation?
  • What decision-making skills and strategies do we need to learn?
  • Is our leadership and organization helping or hindering church health?

 3.     Strengthening Denominational & External Relationships       

  •  How close are we to our denominational leaders?  (National, Regional)
  • How do we view our denomination and its leaders?
  • How do the denominational leaders view us?How do we support them?
  • Should we increase our support? How?
  • How would we like them to support us?
  • What would be good to change in this relationship?
  • What changes do we need to make?
  • What immediate steps can we take to enhance our relationship with our denomination?
  • How well do we cooperate with other churches in the community?
  • How do the other churches perceive us?
  • How should we relate to other churches in our community?

4.     Discovering Who You Are as a Church – Examining Your Identity

  • How do we view our church?
  • What kind of church would we like to become?
  • How healthy is our church?
  • How does our community perceive us?
  • How does our denomination perceive us?
  • What is the specific vision for our church? Is it current?
  • What are our core values?
  • What are the current goals for our ministry?
  • How does our budget process and budget reflect our values and goals?
  • Identify barriers our church faces – how to break through them
  • How do we fit in the culture? Our community?
  • What does our church stand for?
  • How do we communicate within the church?
  • What ministries do we currently have? Collect current statistics.
  • How do our ministries contribute to the fulfillment of our vision?
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of our ministries.
  • Why do people in our church serve? Why do they not serve?
  • Survey spiritual gifts – time and talent.
  • What new ministries should be considered?
  • Identify strengths, weaknesses, problems within our church and its ministry.
  • What needs to change? How can we further develop those changes?
  • Evaluate the results of our study.
  • Where do we go from here? What happens next?

5.     Looking to the Future – A Commitment to New Pastoral Leadership & the Future

  • As a church, are we ready to move forward?
  • Is there any baggage that still needs to be dealt with?
  • What have we learned in the process that will help us plan for the future?
  • What is the level of enthusiasm in our congregation?
  • What is currently happening in our community?
  • What will be happening in the future? 5 years? 10 years?
  • How will we evaluate progress & measure success?
  • What kind of pastor is needed at this time in our history?                       
  • What does our new pastor have to be, to do, to be considered a good pastor?
  • What is the process that we will follow as we search for a new pastor?
  • Discuss the value of a pastor relations committee.
  • How will we conduct the transition between the interim and the new pastor?
  • What do we need to do to be prepared for the new pastor and the beginning of an exciting new ministry together?
  • Discuss the process of caring for the new pastor
  • Plan ways of welcoming the new pastor
  • Where do we see God leading us as a church?



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