14 Questions to Ask a PNC

Thoughtful Pastor Nominating Committees and Presbytery Executives will be ready and willing to answer questions along these lines:

  1. In your experience, what are the best (and worst) things about this church?
  2. In your opinion, what are the best (and worst) qualities about the former pastor?
  3. What would you say are the most memorable qualities about other former pastors of this church?
  4. What are the 3 most difficult conflicts in the recent history of the church?
  5. Why did the previous pastor in this position leave?
  6. What do you think he/she would say was the greatest challenge in pastoring this church?
  7. Briefly describe the interim season of ministry at this church.
  8. What portion of the church would you say is happy with the Mission Study? What demographic of the church is least happy with the findings in the Mission Study? Why?
  9. How are staffing decisions made in the church? What positions have been recently hired? Beyond this pastoral position, what staff positions have made the greatest/most enduring impact on the life of this congregation?
  10. If I were your pastor, and wanted to make a change in the worship/education/youth ministry (choose any), would that be easy or difficult? What would be the appropriate process to do so, in your opinion?
  11. What is the most contentious congregational meeting or setting you can remember? What was the disagreement about? How was the issue settled?
  12. Describe the relationship of this church with the Presbytery. What leadership roles do members of this church serve in the Presbytery or larger church councils/committees.
  13. Has your church been in the news or done something noteworthy recently?
  14. What caused you to be interested in me as a candidate for this position at your church?
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