One of the big topics in Christiany circles lately is succession planning for the senior minister. The pastors of most big churches (and a lot of smaller ones) are talking about it, and Leadership Network recently held an online conference on the topic. It’s a big deal to a lot of people right now. And I’m wondering if it should be.
I doubt my wonderings because I couldn’t have more respect for some of the pastors and elders who are grappling with this issue. But I’m not questioning whether our current models need succession planning;
companies churches with thousands of members and millions of dollars at stake do need to plan for the next CEO pastor. I’m questioning the assumptions behind having that model in the first place. If we didn’t make our churches so senior pastor-centric, would it be so jarring to have a change of leadership? If instead of a CEO model the church was based on a team approach, in which leadership is delegated broadly and more is expected of members, would it be so stressful to replace one person? And, um, isn’t that model more biblical anyway?
But there must be a ton I’m missing because so few people seem to be thinking this way. So let me know what it is–comment away, everyone.