Ask the Matriarch:What to tell (and not tell) the Search Committee

RevGalBlogPals | 8/22/2019 | Staff
joseph76 (Posted by) Level 3
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A pastoral search is an exercise in mutual vulnerability as pastor-to-be and her potential new congregation get to know one another. How much will each reveal to the other about the difficult things as they discern God’s call?

Dear Matriarchs:

Search - Process - PCUSA - Interviews - Search

I am in the search process (PCUSA), and anticipating interviews. I know that search committees are not supposed to ask if you are married or about your family, but they do. I know that the interview process is a time of “dating” so to speak, and because of some recent changes and anticipated events, I am trying to decide when and/or if I need to share this info with a committee.

1) I’m recently separated, moving toward divorce. What/Do they need to know?

Son - ADHD - Issues - Placement - Setting

2) I have a son with ADHD and behavior issues. I am currently seeking placement in a residential setting, but have no idea if/when that will happen. What, if anything, do I need to share with the search committee?

3) I have chronic depression which is, right now, well managed. It may not always be. Do I share this?

Conversations - Committee - Conversation

I am assuming that these conversations would only happen with a committee that I am in very serious conversation with. But still, how and what to tell are not clear to me.

Please help!

Things - Search - Committee - Matriarchs - Wisdom

Don’t we all have things that we wonder about revealing to a search committee? Our Matriarchs offer their wisdom about how to handle these.

As a member of the ELCA, I realize there are some system differences, but here goes.

Marriage - Call - Marriage - Person - Part

I would tell them about your marriage. I would also try to start the new call saying that my marriage has ended and that this person while still a part of my life, will not be a part of the congregation’s life. Start the new job as a single person even if the...
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