Transition Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What’s Your Question?

The Transition Team wants to answer your questions about our church’s transition as Pastor Paul prepares to retire in February, 2018.

We will answer those questions here, as well as in the newsletter each month and also on the Transition Team bulletin board in the narthex.

Please submit your questions to any Transition Team member, Church Council member, or email koktransitions@gmail.com.


Q: What happens if we don’t have an interim Pastor in place when Pastor Paul retires?

A: The Church Council continues to be in regular contact with the Bishop’s office regarding candidates for the interim pastor position. After names have been vetted through the Bishop’s office, the Intentional Interim Pastor (IIP) Search Team will conduct the interview process and make a recommendation to the Church Council. If a candidate has not been selected when Pastor Paul retires on February 1, we have been assured that the Bishop’s office will provide clergy each week to lead worship and perform pastoral duties (funerals, baptisms, weddings, etc.) until an interim Pastor is in place.

We look forward to seeing you at the King of Kings’ Town Hall on Sunday, November 5. Please plan to attend to learn more about the state of King of Kings and where we are in the transition process. In addition, details will be available soon regarding the Dinner Dance on January 13, 2018. We are pleased that Bishop Macholz will be joining us for this event and will also be preaching at both services on Sunday, January 14, 2018.

Q:  What is the process for reviewing permanent Pastor candidates?

A:  A Permanent Pastor Call Committee will be formed in 2018 and will represent a cross section of the congregation. The Bishop’s Office will forward names to this committee which, along with the Church Council, will work through the interview and trial sermon process.  It is possible that only one name at a time will be provided by the Bishop’s office. As previously mentioned, a special congregational meeting will be held once a final candidate is identified and the congregation will vote to call that candidate to be our next Pastor.  

Q:  What feedback can the congregation give regarding the hiring of the interim and permanent Pastor?

A:  Our Intentional Interim Pastor Search Team (IIP Search Team) was installed in July.  This group, which represents a cross-section of the congregation, will be the eye and ears of the congregation as we search for our IIP.  Members of this team are Krista Kolodziejczyk, Colleen Richardson, Lauren Seiter, Ira Showden, Paul deLaubell, and Jeff Wysokowski.  This group will vet candidates for the Church Council, which will ultimately make the hiring decision for the IIP. The established process does not include a vote by the congregation on the IIP candidate.  The IIP will serve King of Kings for a minimum of 12 months.  A Permanent Pastor Call Team will be formed in 2018 and will again represent a cross section of the congregation.  The Permanent Pastor Call Team will interview candidates in conjunction with the Church Council.  A special congregational meeting will be held once a final candidate is identified and the congregation will vote to call that candidate to be our next Pastor.

Q: Where do candidates for the intentional interim pastor come from and how long will the interim pastor be at King of Kings?

A: Candidates for our intentional interim pastor position will come from a variety of sources, including the Synod and referrals. Some candidates may contact the Intentional Interim Pastor Search Team directly. The role of the Intentional Interim Pastor Search Team (IIP Search Team) is to vet candidates for the Church Council, which will ultimately make the hiring decision. Members of the IIP Search Team are Kris Kolodziejczyk, Colleen Richardson, Lauren Seiter, Ira Showden, Paul deLaubell, and Jeff Wysokowski. This team has already had an initial meeting and will continue their work this summer, with a goal of beginning interviews this fall. If you have any concerns about the IIP, please contact anyone in the IIP Search Team or any of your Council members. The Intentional Interim Pastor will serve King of Kings for a minimum of 12 months.

Q: How will pastoral acts (baptisms, weddings, funerals, etc) be handled after Pastor Paul retires?

A: All Pastoral acts will be handled by the interim Pastor (and then by the permanent Pastor, once one is called). The ELCA guidelines for Retired Pastors, adopted in 1998, states, “At the time of retirement a pastor is no longer pastor of a congregation and therefore must discontinue the functions of the pastoral office in the congregation.” It is often difficult for members to understand that Pastor Paul will not be able to officiate at their funeral, or marry or baptize a son or daughter. However, it is important for the congregation to move forward into the future under the leadership of an interim Pastor as we prepare to call a permanent Pastor.

Q: Where do I get a full copy of the timeline?

A: The timeline in the Narthex is a high level view of key transition and congregational events. We are in the process of updating the timeline with information from the recent Leadership Retreat and expect to have the new timeline posted in the near future. In addition, for those who are interested, a detailed timeline with all events related to the transition will be available on a table near the bulletin board.

Q: What is the difference between in Intentional Interim Pastor (IIP) and a Call Pastor?

A: An Intentional Interim Pastor (IIP) provides a bridge when a congregation has experienced a long-term pastorate and needs to create a bridge between the old and new. An IIP will serve King of Kings for about a year, prior to the selection of the next Call pastor. The role of the IIP includes preaching God’s Word; providing leadership, support, and mentoring to our leadership team through modeling and training; leading the regular meetings of the church while providing unity among the leadership team; acting as a liaison with the Synod and the ELCA; and performing general Pastoral duties as requested. An IIP signs a contract with our congregation and is compensated the same as the Pastor, including benefits and other expenses.

IIP candidates for our congregation can come from the Lutheran tradition or from any of our Ecumenical partners. Candidates will be vetted by the Bishop’s office and interviews will be conducted by the IIP Search Team (which will be formed by June, 2017) and the Church Council. It is our intention to have an IIP in place on February 1, 2018. At this point, we don’t know if this will be a full-time or part-time position.

A Call Pastor becomes the permanent Pastor of our congregation. Candidate names are provided by the Bishop’s office to the Call Pastor Search Team (which will be in place by mid year 2018) and the Council. Candidates are interviewed by these groups and they will listen to candidates preach. Once a finalist is determined, that person preaches a sermon at King of Kings and the congregation has an opportunity to vote and offer a pastoral call to that finalist.

Q: What if we don’t like the IIP?

A: The IIP will serve our congregation for a specific period of time under contract, and the leadership style of the IIP may be different from the current Pastor. If a serious issue develops, language in the contract signed between the IIP and the Church Council allows either party to break the contract.


If you have any questions about this process or have other questions about the transition in general, please contact a Transition Team member (Chris Jordan, Anna Salem, Steve Miller, Julie Yoder, Barb Nies, Jerry Holland, Howie Mansfield, or Anita Leitgeb) or a Council member (Barb Winkel, Doug Keim, Niel Zuern, Pat Lebel, Jenna Wysokowski, or Alison Woytowich).  

We are grateful for your continued prayerful support!