In addition to the Conference Ministry staff, the work of the conference is done in large part by the Conference Board and three committees: Pastoral Leadership, Christian Formation, and Outreach & Service. As a glimpse into the work of our conference, these three committees and the Conference Board were each invited to share a short story of recent committee activity.
THE WORK OF THE PASTORAL LEADERSHIP COMMITTEE
by Kelsey Guckenberger, pastor of Christ Community Church, Des Moines, IA
Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,
whose confidence is in God.
They will be like a tree planted by the water
that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
It's leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
and never fails to bear fruit.
Becoming a pastor is a long process. There are late nights of studying for Church History exams in the library, early morning commutes to Field Education placements, cramming everything you have learned about yourself as a ministering person into 1,500 characters (including spaces) for your Mennonite Leadership Information form (ML), waiting for churches to call you, interviewing with a congregation, discerning with the congregation if God is calling you there, and interviewing with a group of experienced and wise people on the Pastoral Leadership Committee (PLC).
Amidst this process it is easy to get caught up in the small details and big questions. Where will I be called? Will my spouse be able to find a job there? How will we be welcomed into the community? In all of the uncertainty that comes with becoming a pastor, we are invited to do the same thing that we are called to do for our entire ministry: to trust in God.
The process of becoming a pastor calls us to trust, because trusting in God is more important than preaching the best sermon, or having a great resume, or reading the latest book. In the end, no amount of achievement, or education, or personality will make us faithful. Pastors are called to put down deep roots and reach for the living water that only Christ can give. In times when things are going well or times such as these that are difficult and dry, we are called to root ourselves in that living water and guide others to trust as well. For when we are rooted in Christ, we will not fail to bear much fruit.
Kelsey Guckenberger was installed and licensed for pastoral ministry at Christ Community Church in Des Moines, IA on June 30, 2019.
The Pastoral Leadership Committee is charged with developing and maintaining high quality pastoral leadership for Central Plains congregations. PLC works closely with Susan Janzen, the Conference Minister for Ministerial Leadership. You can read more about the PLC on our website. http://www.centralplainsmc.org/pastoral-leadership.html.