Book of Order: G-3.0307
Charges “each presbytery shall develop and maintain mechanisms and processes to serve as pastor and counselor to teaching elders, ruling elders commissioned to pastoral service, and certified Christian educators of the presbytery; to facilitate the relations between the presbytery and its congregations, teaching elders, ruling elders commissioned to pastoral service, and certified Christian educators; and to settle difficulties on behalf of the presbytery where possible and expedient. Such entities shall be composed of ruling elders and teaching elders in approximately equal numbers, bearing in mind the principles of unity in diversity in F-1.0403. All actions carried out as a result of delegated authority must be reported to the presbytery at its next regular meeting.”
What that means:
COM cares about everybody in the presbytery. Each member of the COM believes the work we are called to do lives out our commitment to our Presbyterian connections. Taking our PWV mission to heart, we seek to “awaken, enliven and enhance our worshiping communities” by walking with your congregation when new ministries are celebrated, when pastoral leadership transitions occur and all the times in between. COM seeks to provide a calming, supportive presence to assist each congregation achieve its highest goals of sharing Christ with their community. Please contact us – we’d love to join your congregation’s faith journey and provide you with the resources you need to be fruitful.
Commission on Ministry members are elected by the Presbytery Assembly and share the responsibility to strengthen the welfare of congregations and make manifest the unity of the body of Christ by:
• Serving as pastor and counselor to the ministers, lay pastors and Christian educators of presbytery.
• Advising sessions and approving or dissolving calls on behalf of the presbytery. COM defines pastoral relationships among pastors, congregations, and the presbytery and approves terms of call, whether indefinite, designated, or temporary with annual review.
• Appointing and approving ordination and installation commissions for minister members.
• Facilitating relationships between congregations, ministers, educators and presbytery
• Visiting congregations regularly and consulting with each minister, encouraging each session and congregation to engage in the collaborative work of the presbytery and larger church.
• Counseling congregations without pastoral leaders and encouraging creative ways to share pastoral leadership as well as approving appropriate preachers for limited pulpit supply.
• Validating pastoral work of ministers that meet specific criteria for pastoral positions not directly serving a congregation.
• Mediating difficulties when possible and expedient, promoting peace and harmony of the churches
• Approving acceptance and dismissal of minister members with other presbyteries and denominations
• Reporting annually to the Assembly the type of work in which each minister of the presbytery is engaged and releasing from ministry those who request it or do not engage in validated ministry for more than three years.
• Appointing moderators for congregations without pastors or when requested
• Implementing equal opportunity for ministers and candidates
• Recommending trained lay pastors for commissioning by Presbytery to pastoral leadership supervised by ordained pastors.
• Reporting all actions it takes as a commission to Council and to Presbytery Assembly.
Membership of the Commission on Ministry:
Membership consists of those who display the spiritual gifts of encouragement, admiration, patience, compassion and confidentiality. Also, a willingness to be a servant, speak the truth in love and keep the overall health of congregational and pastoral leaders of the presbytery in view. There are fifteen elected at-large members. Some of the specialized work assigned is:
- Vice Moderator
- Church Advocates
- CRE and Christian Educators mentors
- Pulpit Supply List
- Church Vitality
- Installations and Commissionings
- Boundaries and Ethics Training Events
- Transitional Ministry
- Validated Ministry and Honorably Retired Pastor Support
- Visioning and Connecting Leader and Stated Clerk – ex-officio
Terms are for three years, with a second three-year term possible.
COM meets on the first Thursday of each month.
From the current Moderator:
Thanks for your interest in the work of the Commission on Ministry!