How to Question Officer Candidates

This Sunday evening at 6 PM at the SDA we will have a very important congregational meeting. Open to members and attendees alike, in this 90 minute gathering we will engage our three officer candidates in Q & A about their nomination for church leadership positions.

This is no small thing. Our bylaws require confirmation of all candidates by no-less than 75% vote of the assembled membership. That vote, Lord willing, will occur after the worship service on January 8, 2012. In order to be able to affirm or deny responsibly depends on having at least some knowledge of these men.

We have already sent out copies of their testimonies to everyone concerned, so unless you have some point of clarification on any of their stories, there is no need to question them about how they came to Christ. Where we must focus our attention in questioning each prayerfully, humbly, and respectfully is in terms of how God judges a man’s fitness for office, namely, character (including family life), doctrine, and philosophy of church ministry/leadership.

For those who find posing questions in a public forum in front of a microphone a bit intimidating but still would like to do so, feel free to email me your submission to me at and the elders will do our best to take it into account. Child care will be provided for the little ones.

Hope to see you there!

Officer Candidate Process Update

This Saturday is a big day. A number of our current elders and deacons will meet with our three candidates for office from 8 AM to 3 PM at the church office. Each of the three, two for elder and one for deacon, have completed their written exams. We will meet with them, one at a time, for 90 minutes each on Saturday to follow up with an oral exam.

The oral exam covers questions related to each candidate’s personal testimony, his fitness for office given the qualifications in First Timothy 3 and Titus 1, and his doctrine and philosophy of ministry particularly with respect to leadership. Following each interview and the dismissal of the candidate, we will debrief for thirty minutes to share our initial impressions from the interview and commit to any follow up communication or action steps we deem necessary.

As soon as we possibly can after this Saturday we will announce to the congregation who we intend to put forth as candidates for office. A date and time will be included for the congregational Q & A of each one. This is a rigorous process overall, for everyone concerned, especially this Saturday for those who will examine all three candidates. We would covet your prayers both for the candidates and us as officers as we continue to steward this most important aspect of our ministry.

Next Step for Potential Officers

Check out this week’s enews for an update on the officer nomination process ongoing in 2011.

The three men remaining on this demanding journey will meet with representatives of our leadership this Saturday morning for a debrief from their near two month self-study process of officer training.

Here are the kinds of questions we will put before them:

  1. What issues, questions, key insights, and/or concerns surfaced as a result of your reading of your Strauch book?
  2. How would you assess your familiarity with the doctrines of grace and an overall Reformed view of theology? Where, if at all, might you take exception to our confession of faith?
  3. To what extent do you feel the gospel governs your own heart’s desires and how prepared do you feel to engage the people we serve and shepherd in “scuba diving” into the depths of their hearts?
  4. When you grapple with the biblical qualifications of church officers in terms of your own testimony, how do you feel you measure up by God’s grace?
  5. How would you imagine yourself reacting to participating in a church discipline case within OGC that resulted in excommunication? How equipped do you feel in the realm of biblical peacemaking for all levels of restorative discipline within the body of Christ?
  6. What questions do you have about the role of elder? If a candidate on this score, how prepared do you feel you are to step into the office and function in a God-glorifying way?
  7. What questions do you have about the role of deacon? If a candidate on this score, how prepared do you feel you are to step into the office and function in a God-glorifying way?
  8. Where, if at all, do you have concern that you lack preparation for office and how might we assist you in addressing that?
  9. What questions do you have about where you will proceed from here should God give you liberty to continue to pursue answering your nomination call?
  10. How would you suggest we might improve the overall process thus far in setting apart future leaders for OGC?

Please continue to pray for these men and their discernment about the will of God for their future with respect to service on the leadership team at OGC. And don’t forget to check out the update this Thursday!