Intentional Interim Pastor

An Intentional Interim Pastor is an ordained minister who has been trained in how to lead a congregation through the transition from one permanent pastor to the next permanent pastor.
I had been a permanent pastor of small and large churches in MD and VA before taking the Southern Baptist training in 2005 as a Transitional Pastor.  Now the more common title is Intentional Interim Pastor.  Since 2005, I have served as an interim pastor, full-time and part-time, at large and small churches in VA, AZ, and NC.

What does an Intentional Interim  Pastor do?

The words in the title describe the role and function of this ministry.  Intentional denotes someone who is called, and trained, specifically to lead the church through the process of calling a new permanent pastor.  Interim means he is not the permanent pastor.  Pastor describes the full range of pastoral duties while serving in the transition period: preaching, teaching, counseling, visitation, and spiritual leadership.

Transitional process:

  • The Intentional Interim Pastor is called to the church by the same process used to call a permanent pastor.
  • The transition period takes, on average, anywhere from 6 months to 2 years, depending on the needs of the church.  Spiritual and numeric growth can occur during this process.
  • The interim pastor begins his ministry by leading the church to examine its history and current practices, and then to prayerfully develop a mission statement in accord with the plan they believe the Lord has for their church.  The church will then reach a consensus on the expectations they have for the new pastor to help them fulfill their mission.  A search committee will be trained and led by the Holy Spirit to find the right person to lead them into the future.  Once the new pastor has been called, the final duty of the Intentional Interim Pastor is to help the church prepare for a blessed and successful start for the ministry of the new pastor.