Frequently Asked Questions
When was the pastor search committee formed?
St. Matthews Baptist Church unanimously elected the 11 members of the Pastor Search Committee in August 2020.
What have you been doing since the committee was formed?
Whew, a lot! The Pastor Search Committee isn’t provided with any set guidelines or directions for finding a new pastor. Our Church’s bylaws only instruct the Pastor Search Committee to elect a chair and vice-chair and to appoint a secretary. Churches and technology evolve over time; the process that worked for a Search Committee 10 years ago is often outdated or is no longer relevant to the present.
While the Church Profile Committee was busy at work during fall 2020, the Pastor Search Committee researched and drafted the overall search process we would use to guide our work. Our research involved reading through a variety of search process publications, talking with search committee members from another church who had recently completed a pastor search, talking with retired pastors and other trusted individuals with experience in the search process, discussing key “take-aways” from these conversations and applying them to our own work. The Search Committee created a Pastor Search Process flowchart that identifies the various stages of the search, illustrates our progress and where we are in the overall process.
Once the Church Profile was finalized, we began work on drafting a Pastor Profile and a questionnaire for congregational feedback. The Committee has been working with a web developer to create web pages dedicated to communicating the Search Process to the Church as well as creating a web-based Senior Pastor application process. The Committee has also been developing a system to track applicants and our communications with them as well as the procedures by which we’ll evaluate applicants during the application and interview process.
What role did the church profile committee play in our search for a new pastor?
The Church Profile Committee was charged with developing a Church profile that would “ascertain and convey the state of our Church and the congregation in order to provide direction from the Church to the Pastor Search Committee” as stated in the August 9, 2020 business meeting.
After the Church Profile was approved by the congregation on January 31, 2021, the Pastor Search Committee studied the 23-page document. The Search Committee especially focused on the sections identifying the church’s current challenges and its future direction, reflecting on these areas as it pertains to our next leader by identifying necessary skill sets and personal traits needed to address these challenges.
The Church Profile is also a valuable tool in the search process as potential senior pastor applicants will be asked to review it to gain better knowledge about St. Matthews Baptist Church’s past, present, and hopes for its future.
What are you using as guidance to determine the gifts, talent, education and experience our new pastor should have?
After prayerfully studying the Church Profile, holding discussions with church staff and leadership, and reviewing congregants’ input via a questionnaire, the Committee identified important abilities, skills and traits desired in our next pastor and assembled those together in the Pastor Profile. The Pastor Profile is a tool the Search Committee is using to help guide them toward potential pastor applicants who would be a good fit for SMBC.
How long does it take to find a new pastor?
Generally speaking, for a church of our size, the search process can take 1 ½ to 2 years during normal, non-Pandemic times once a Search Committee is formed. Our Search Committee is diligently working to find the individual God has chosen to lead our congregation and is ultimately reliant on God’s timing to do so. We fully understand the urgency to fill this position, and we feel the weight of finding the right match in this crucial moment in our Church’s life. Please be patient with us as we do this important work and pray for us during this process.
When will we begin advertising and accepting applications for our new pastor?
We will begin advertising and accepting applications on May 1.
I know someone that I think would be a good fit. How can I best let them know about the opening and is there somewhere I can direct them for more information?
All applicants will be asked to submit their application online through a web-based application process. They can find the application webpage at:
You can also send an email to the Search Committee at SearchCommittee@smbclouisville.org with questions or to send the Committee your recommendation and their contact info.
Where can I get information about our progress in the search process?
You can find the Search Committee’s current progress in the flowchart posted on the Search Process web page here:
Search Committee members are also available to speak with small groups or Sunday School classes to update them on the process. Feel free to reach out to a Committee member or send an email request to SearchCommittee@smbclouisville.org.