Update: Associate Pastor Search


The Associate Pastor Interview Committee (APIC) met on February 20 and, deciding that it has not found a candidate who would meet Derry’s needs, suspended its activities indefinitely. 

One of the considerations that went into this decision was the recent change in M.E. Steelman’s status, moving to full-time and expanding her responsibilities. 

Another consideration was that at its last meeting, the Personnel Committee recommended to Session that Derry create a new position for a Faith Community Nurse. That position would serve pastoral care needs in the congregation in situations involving health and wellness issues. Faith Community Nurses are registered nurses who are specially trained in pastoral care: click to learn more. Session reviewed information on what it would take to create such a position at its February meeting, and will vote on it at its March meeting. 

If, after a period of discernment about Derry’s staffing needs, it’s determined that an associate pastor is needed, Session may constitute a more formal search committee and process. On the other hand, we may find that gaps in meeting congregational needs may be better met with one or two part-time, non-ordained positions targeted at those particular needs.

APIC members volunteer in many of the areas where there may be gaps, such as youth and children’s ministry. We have asked APIC members to observe and evaluate these areas in their volunteer positions over the course of the next several months. The Personnel Committee will be soliciting their feedback this summer on their experience.

The Personnel Committee thanks the APIC for its thoughtful diligence and prayerful participation in this process. Their openness in allowing the Holy Spirit to guide the Committee in its deliberations and discernment have served this congregation well.