Church Elder Training is not simple or easy.
Why is that? Because it’s a matter of…
Existing church leaders must be able to IDENTIFY/DISCOVER men within the church family who are faithful, available, and teachable who have a heart to serve the church rather than lording their assigned authority over them (1 Peter 5:3)
Existing church leaders, with the assistance of the church family (congregation) need to ASSESS whether the men identified are ready for the role of Church Elder, from character, theological, and motivational standpoints.
Those identified and deemed ready to serve must be EQUIPPED for the role. It’s one of eternal magnitude – the care of the souls of God’s people (His Bride). It would be unwise and uncaring not to give men the tools needed for the job.
Church Elder Training requires intentional care and diligence
As the new Pastor of a small church, I found myself faced with this reality. I did find at least one excellent book on the subject, but nothing as PRACTICAL as what I felt was needed.
I wanted a form of Church Elder Training that…
- Considered the Bible’s teaching about the role of Church Elder first and foremost (which, among many other important things, means it’s of a Complementarian orientation)
- Avoided the assumption that men competent in business will automatically be good leaders in the church
- Was laid out systematically and thoughtfully
- Didn’t imply that men interested in learning more were were automatically “in”
- Allowed the church family to take part in the assessment in real, helpful ways
- Paid due consideration to the man’s wife (and her willingness/enthusiasm for him to take on the role)
- Enabled the entire process to be a family affair that generated enthusiasm and unity in the church
So, I began working on a “curriculum” of my own.
Get your copies of the Elder Training Handbook
Paperback version only. Shipped directly from Amazon.
(Review left on Amazon)
If you are looking for a simple tool to use in training up elders at your church, this is definitely worth checking out. The author has taken the system he uses at his church and put it in a book for you to just hand off to someone ready to jump in. If you don’t have time to write your own customized system, I think you could easily start with this as it is. He’s got tests and evaluations and explanations. It’s good. Doctrinally, the author is on the conservative side of things, which means reformed theology, male eldership, etc. All good with me. All in all, this is a good tool, especially if you are looking for something that can be totally finished in a year or so with potential elders. I’m glad I found it. I’ll be suggesting it to others.
Use the Elder Training Handbook for effective Church Elder Training
The Elder Training Handbook will help you…
- See the hearts and character of the men you consider as Church Elders
- Assess candidate’s understanding and commitment to the potential of taking on an Elder role
- Realistically assess spiritual fitness for the role alongside practical skills and abilities
- Delegate assessment to others on the existing Church Leadership team
- Carry out the process with an “open door” understanding (watch the video above to understand why that matters)
- Gain insight into the Holy Spirit’s leading regarding each candidate for the role of Church Elder
- Address all the vital topics, both theological and practical
- Set a time frame that allows for adequate assessment but keeps the process moving
- Assess how each candidate’s gifting and personality fit into the chemistry of your existing leadership team
- Communicate the process to your church family clearly and effectively, setting right expectations and seriousness about the process
- Ask practical and relevant questions as you work through the process together
- Record your observations in provided evaluations
Church Elder Training that truly involves the Church family…
It may sound impossible to include the church family in the assessment, training, and confirmation of men as Church Elders, but I saw it as something that was absolutely necessary.
The members of the church family likely know candidates far better and in different contexts that church leaders do – and also need to feel that the men in the role of Church Elder can be trusted.
By making a way to legitimately include the participation of the Church Family, Church leaders will…
- Communicate value and care to church members
- Gain insight and wisdom they did not and possibly could not have on their own
- Foster unity and a cooperative spirit among the membership of the church
- Build credibility as leaders through appropriate and genuine care of the church as a whole
- Demonstrate clear principles of cooperative efforts within the church
- Establish clear communication between leadership and members
- Example what it means to lead with care and consideration
- Ultimately, confirm men for the role of Church Elder who are better qualified and equipped
A fantastic resource for every pastor’s library!
How Church Elder Training can include the entire church family
How to make best use of this Church Elder Training workbook
- Each candidate will need his own workbook to complete
- An existing Church Leader should work through the content systematically, front to back in a one on one scenario with the candidate
- Schedule regular meetings to discuss the content and allow for two-way assessment of the process in an ongoing fashion
- Once the workbook content is complete, begin the provided assessments in stages as recommended in the workbook
Helpful and useful for leadership.