Pastor Search Questionnaire

A pastor search questionnaire is one of the most essential pieces of the search process. Resumes' are all different and often don't reveal some of the things you consider most important. But when you have each potential candidate complete a questionnaire, you will be able to compare responses to the questions you deem most important.

The objective of a questionnaire is to get answers to key questions so that...

  1. You can quickly compare one potential candidate with others.
  2. You can get your most important questions answered.

There are three parts to a good questionnaire.

  1. Personal Information: While some of your questions about the person's personal life will be answered in his resume', it is important to ask these questions anyway so that you have a format for comparing one potential candidate with another. Put in your pastor search questionnaire questions like, Are you married? How long have you been married? Do you have children? How many children and what are their ages? Have either you or your spouse been divorced? Have you ever been convicted of a crime - misdemeanor or felony? Have you ever been sued? If yes, what for? Will you consent to a thorough background check? Do you struggle with pornography? Have you ever had an inappropriate relationship with someone who is not your spouse? Are all your children followers of Christ? If not, please describe. How do you balance time with family and ministry? What talents do you have? How does your spouse involve herself in ministry?
  2. Professional Information: Ask questions like, do you prefer to live in a parsonage or a home you purchase? What college and/or seminary did you attend? What degree(s) have you earned? What denomination or association do you belong to? When and where were you ordained? Do you do pastoral counseling or do you refer congregants to other counselors? How do you pursue continuing education? What do you consider to be your spiritual gifts? As you are preparing your pastor search questionnaire, go through your hierarchy of values and through your pastor qualifications to add more questions to your form.
  3. Theological Information: Ask questions like, have you read our doctrinal statement? Do you agree 100% with our doctrinal statement? If you have reservations about anything in our doctrinal statement, where do you differ? Describe your convictions about the Trinity. Discuss your understanding of the two natures of Christ. Do you believe there will be a rapture of saints? What do you believe about the tribulation? How do you understand the covenants - that is, are you dispensational or covenantal in your theology? Do you believe that God has a special future for the literal nation of Israel or has the church been substituted for Israel in God's sovereign plan? How do you believe God created the universe - in seven literal days? Go through your church doctrinal statement and ask specific questions about each area your statement discusses.

Put a lot of time and effort into creating your pastor search questionnaire. The better your questionnaire, the better your decisions.

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