Congregational Engagement on Eldership Candidates

Elder Candidates:  David Strader, Zach Eikenberry, & Ethan Perkins

One of the weightiest tasks a pastor has is to appoint other pastors to serve along side of within the local church. Last month, we presented Clark Howell as an honorary pastor. His years of faithful service to the church and heart for Jesus provides us all with a life worth modeling.  His life sets a high bar for what it means for us to love God and love others.  On the same day of Clark’s appointment, we presented three candidates for recommendation for eldership at East North Church. We now invite our church members to consider what it means for these men to be appointed to serve as elders, pastors, shepherds of the flock at ENC.

To begin, our members need to know that we have a lengthy process to help men examine their lives and their doctrine closely. I want to make sure that the men we recommend for your consideration show maturity in their lives and a humility in their character that reflects Jesus and the elder qualifications found in God’s Word. These men have spent all of 2017 with me investigating, exploring, and considering the calling to eldership. We've read books together, met together, discussed what eldership looks like and what it means, and even wrestled with our flaws. The result of this time is a confidence in God’s calling on their lives along with evidence that these men meet the biblical qualification to lead as elders. 

For your consideration and approval of these men to be in alignment with Scripture, I encourage you to investigate what the Bible says about eldership. Read 1 Timothy, Titus, 1 Peter 5:1-4. Then read what others teach and say about pastoral leadership here. 

http://www.acts29.com/biblical-qualifications-of-a-pastor/

https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/what-is-the-role-of-an-elder

http://resources.thegospelcoalition.org/library/what-is-biblical-eldership

https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/course/basics-of-church-eldership/#the-plurality-of-elders 

After considerable discussion, training, and prayer, Clark and I are grateful to commend David Strader, Zach Eikenberry, and Ethan Perkins for your consideration as pastors. We believe that the Holy Spirit is calling and appointing David, Zach, and Ethan to serve as elders alongside us (Acts 20:28). Over the course of the next 3 weeks, we will share additional information from each candidate on the blog.

Each pastoral appointment will carry with it an expectation of unique roles and responsibilities…

- David is being asked to be an elder over our deacons who lead Ministry Teams.  This includes Hospitality, Connections, Kids, Prayer, Events, and Facilities.

- Zach is being appointed to serve as an pastor over the deacons who lead our Missional Communities. 

- Ethan is being charged with the role of overseeing our Worship, Design, and Production Ministry. 

So, what’s next?

We believe it is of best practice that each elder candidate should be presented to the congregation for consideration. The congregation will be given a period of time for concerns, comments, or charges to be submitted in writing concerning the elder candidate. After this period, the members of our congregation will have the opportunity to affirm the elder candidate at the Members meeting in April 2018. 

Here is the timeline for this…

Dec 2017: David, Zach, & Ethan are presented as candidates.

January through April -  Any comments, concerns or charges can be submitted in writing to the elders by emailing todd@eastnorthchurch.com. Concerns and charges will be assessed by the elders and discussed with the elder candidate as needed.

April 2018: East North Church members will vote on each candidate. Pending this vote, David, Zach, and Ethan will be appointed as elders.

We ask that you pray for David, Zach and Ethan and their families during this time. Also, pray for our church that Jesus would continue to call and equip men to serve as elders here.  We encourage you to engage with these candidates both formally and informally to better understand their heart for Jesus and the church. We are confident that our church will be stronger with a plurality of elders sharing in the work of the gospel together. 

Todd Perkins