What is the congregation’s or organization’s vision for ministry? Additionally describe how this vision is lived out.
FPCNH is a theologically progressive church that strives to balance worship of God, mutual caring,
spiritual growth, and involvement in service to the world around us. The life of the church is one,
and its worship, witness and service are inseparable. In all we do, we seek to glorify and enjoy the
triune God who creates, sustains, saves, and renews all life.
As a More Light congregation steeped in the Reformed tradition, we welcome all people in Christ’s
name: children and adults, single and married, gay and straight, across all races and ethnicities.
Congregants appreciate our active multigenerational community.
Our proximity to Yale Divinity School allows us to mentor and benefit from the gift of student
interns. We are overall a well-educated congregation with many diverse interests. Our Sunday
adult education sessions regularly pull upon the academic, professional and pastoral expertise of
our members, as does our roster of summer preachers.
Mission is central to our identity: globally, nationally and locally. We regularly welcome visits
from mission coworkers. In 2015, our national focus was mass incarceration and its
disproportionate effects on black men. Members of our church now tutor persons newly released
from prison. In 2016, we have been studying the racial divide in our country and the effect of
White privilege/Empire Building. Each year, over 100 church members help host 12 homeless
men as part of the multi-congregational Abraham’s Tent program.
How do you feel called to reach out to address the emerging needs of your community or constituency?
We feel called to care for each other, to worship God and grow in faith, and love and serve others.
Perfecting welcome is an ongoing goal of the congregation. We agree that social justice is at the
heart of the Gospel and integral to who we are as a church. We seek to find balance between
political advocacy and direct involvement in opportunities to serve.
Our congregants come from a fairly large geographical area and arrive with a variety of spiritual
needs and preferences. We want to keep our traditions but remain open to different and creative
ways to do worship and fellowship. We desire a dynamic Christian Education program for all and
want to devote special attention to young families and youth. Leadership that works to maintain
trust and communication is vital.
The educational and income levels of our members stand in stark contrast to the surrounding city
which ranks high in income inequality. We want to deepen our efforts to engage with our
neighbors and tap into the rich creativity of the city so that we can be a better reflection of the
community and serve it more effectively.
How will this position help you to reach your vision and mission goals?
The pastoral position is essential to our efforts to align our actions with the congregation’s
identified aspirations for how we relate to each other, and to the New Haven and world
communities. We want a pastor who can help us perfect areas of current congregational strength,
such as inspiring worship and offering a warm welcome for diverse persons. We also seek a
pastor who has the wisdom and skills to help us recognize emerging ministry opportunities and
move ahead on unmet goals, especially in the areas of mission/social justice witness and the
nurture of young families and youth. The new pastor will help us bridge the gap between our
desire to strengthen our witness in justice projects with effective and broad congregational
Operationally, the pastor must be willing to listen to the ideas, the passions, and the needs of
members of the congregation and staff with understanding, respect, humor, and personal
presence. The pastor will need to hold these ideas, passions and need in the light of the gospel to
discern, with the Session and congregation, how to proceed practically and responsively.
Provide a description of the characteristics needed by the person who is open to being called to this congregation and or organization.
We seek an enthusiastic and welcoming pastor, committed to the reformed tradition and the
continued vitality of our unique church family. We would hire either a pastor or co-pastors.
Excellence in preaching is our top priority, with sermons which offer inspiring and incisive takes
on Biblical texts and topics of the day, which will challenge or motivate. Our pastor must connect
with our members personally, knowing members' names and something about them and reaching
out warmly to all ages, and must set a tone of care and compassion for all, especially those in the
hospital, nursing homes or are homebound. We hope to embrace our under-18 members and
therefore seek a pastor who encourages youth involvement in church life. Our pastor needs to
coordinate and inspire our service work outside church walls. We value a strong affiliation to the
PC(USA); the pastor will need to be involved in Presbytery, report back to the congregation and
Session and help us support Presbyterian causes. We have many causes near to our hearts; these
sometimes compete for our attention and funds. Therefore, our next pastor should be not only a
social justice motivator, who brings us closer to the Greater New Haven community and calls our
attention to broad international concerns, but also a leader who helps us set priorities for our time
and talents as we seek to involve the entire church in mission. Overall, our ideal pastor will value
who we are as a church family and have vision for who we can be.
What specific tasks, assignments, and program areas will this person have responsibility?
Provide a welcoming, inclusive, balanced ministry of worship, pastoral care, administrative
oversight, programming, support & focus for community outreach & advocacy in pursuit of social
justice & reform. We are an active community willing to share skills & talents to develop & sustain
our spiritual community.
Strong worship leadership, planning
Stimulating teaching-inspire & challenge spiritual development all ages
Visitation–comfort/counsel/communion in times of need, change, crisis & joy
Homebound & hospitalized communion
Officiate weddings & funerals
Collaborate w/ Caring Ministry Team
Supervise & support staff:Directors of Music & Christian Education of Children & Youth;
Administrator & Custodial
Supervise seminary intern
Moderate & inspire session
Oversee & collaborate with committees
Active involvement in Presbytery
Coordinate, document policies, procedures
Oversee physical plant
Basic technological competence
Support Christian Ed all ages
Facilitate & coordinate Adult Ed
Strengthen children & youth programs
Teach & facilitate new member & confirmation classes
Lead weekly Bible Study
Support, empower & collaborate with committee programs & outreach
Support community outreach & engagement-personally & empowering the church family
Outreach to Greater New Haven Community
Interfaith community involvement
Relationships include Yale Divinity & community service providers
Our website for additional information: http://fpcnh.org/