Frequently Asked Questions

Is the current Transitional Pastor a candidate for the new Senior Pastor position?

It is the advice and practice from our denomination ECO that the Transitional Pastor is not a candidate for the Senior Pastor role.

Who will set the vision for the future of Menlo Church? The current Transitional Pastor or the new Senior Pastor?

By our denomination charter and our bylaws, Session is responsible for the vision of Menlo Church.

How will the size and composition of SPSC be determined?

Session is seeking candidates who are spiritually mature, having a spirit of discernment, and who can work collaboratively. The selection of committee members will be made with awareness and effort for diverse representation across campuses, generations, ethnicity, and gender. Members were asked to self-nominate or nominate others whom they hold in high respect. Please see the role chart sent with the 2/23 request. Nominations received through campus pastors are being followed up by four elders for consideration to serve on the SPSC. The final size and composition of SPSC has not been determined.
Roles Chart

Ratio of Session to non-Session members?

Elders serving on Session will comprise less than half of the committee members.

Was staff involved in the formation of the SPSC?

Yes. John Crosby (Transitional Pastor), Eugene Lee (Executive Pastor), and Scott Palmbush (Pastor of Campuses and member of Session) are present for discussion at Session meetings. Campus pastors assisted in the process by receiving nominations and made recommendations of members whom they felt met the desired qualifications.

Will staff be invited or considered for the Search committee?

The new Senior Pastor will be the Head of Staff. For this reason, it is considered good practice to not have staff members serve on the search committee. In addition, the Presbytery Ministry Partnership Team also recommended that staff not be included as members of the search committee.

This is a pretty big deal for our church. Will we, members of the congregation, be able to play a role in giving feedback on final candidates?

Members were asked in the 2/23/21 Elder letter to contact their campus pastors to indicate interest in volunteering, nominating, and giving feedback. The SPSC, once finalized, will also seek input from the congregation. Once the committee has determined one or two final candidates, your elder representatives will vote to approval a final candidate. The Session will call a congregational meeting to recommend the new pastor. Per our bylaws, two-thirds of the members present at this meeting will be needed to vote affirmative, to approve the new Senior Pastor.

What is the charter for the committee?

The SPSC will be tasked to work on a Senior Pastor job description, interview and recommend a search firm, interview candidates, and present final candidates to Session for approval.

What is the Session’s responsibility in this process?

Session is responsible to call a Senior Pastor and to form the search committee. Once the committee is determined, Session will work collaboratively with the SPSC to determine the job description, approve the SPSC selection of a search firm, and accept the SPSC recommendation of candidates. Session will inform the congregation of the process and provide updates. Session will convene a congregational meeting. Our bylaws stipulate that the Senior Pastor call requires a two-third vote of members present at a congregational meeting.

What is the congregation’s role in this process?

Congregation members were asked to self nominate or nominate others to serve. Once SPSC conclude their work and recommendations to Session, the congregation will be asked to affirm the final recommendation through a two-thirds vote at a congregational meeting. Feedback is always welcomed by Session and the SPSC (once formed). Please email elders@menlo.church at any point in this process. We also ask for your prayers in discernment.

Questions on Timing

For questions regarding process and timing, please see our Timeline.
View Timeline

Menlo Church
1111 University Drive Menlo Park, CA 94025
650-323-8600

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