Re: Finding a minister American style



Gareth McCaughan wrote:

"Quasin" wrote:

I'm not saying that this person has some inalienable
right to keep his job. I'm saying that firing him
because he is having trouble in some other part of
his life is (on the face of it) cruel, and that even
if it's in fact the right thing to do it's understandable
if he tries to stop it happening.

There are a number of statements in the Bible that seem unfair or cruel to me. So I'm not sure "cruel" is necessarily a valid standard, at least not for anyone who believes in, say, hell, which also sounds cruel.


A switch from "the elders run the church" to "This is my church, I run
it my way" the first time the elders disagree with him, is not
possessive?

You didn't mention before that it was the first time the elders disagreed with him. For all I could tell, he'd deferred to the elders any number of times before, and was taking a different approach now because the alternative was being removed from his job.

My mistake. Every church I've ever been involved with, the elders habitually defer to the pastor whether they agree with him or not, even while everyone mouths that the elders are in charge.


One church the vestry had to go to court to get rid of the minister who had stopped doing any work other than showing up on Sunday mornings; he claimed that it's his church and they can't kick him. (Court's HATE church battles, but the bylaws clearly said vestry is in charge, so court sided with vestry.) Episcopalian church.

Another church by the time the elders finally protested long on-going behaviors like telling people to tithe to the minister instead of to the church, and violating various tax laws, they'd lost control in fact - the all-member meeting was packed by the pastor with his non-member friends to whom he had promised the right to vote. I had warned the elders to guard the power plug when showing slides of the false bookkeeping but forgot to warn about protecting the main power switch to the building. (Me bad, I'll do better next time.) Non-denominational church.

And so on, lots of stories. I just assume by now that just about all elders/vestry rubber stamp the pastor whether or not they agree with him (her). I should have said so out loud.

And the Bible *doesn't* say "relieve a preacher of his
duties if his wife leaves him". It says that an episkopos
(bishop, overseer, whatever) "must manage his own household
well, keeping his children submissive and respectful in
every way" and says something similar about a diakonos
(deacon, servant, minister). In its context this is clearly
talking about the *appointment* of episkopoi; it's not
at all clear that the criteria for remaining in post should
be as strict as those for getting in in the first place.
(Stability is good.)

Someone not eligible to take a job is nevertheless eligible to keep it?


They were ... choosing
a (controversial) *interpretation* of what the Bible says
about who should fill certain roles in the church.

If the elders are supposedly in charge of a church, why wouldn't the elders be to ones to decide how to interpret a Bible passage on church positions?


Or, what standards does anyone here think the Bible states for removing (temporarily or permanently) a person from a church leadership position?

Quasin
.