Dear Radiant Family,
“We are called to come alongside others in covenant relationship through which the saving, healing, and restoring grace of Christ may flow.”
I am writing today on behalf of the Radiant Christian Life Church leadership to bring everyone up to speed on where we are in regards to the future direction of Radiant Christian Life Church, realizing we haven’t said much since February of this year.
At that time, I shared with you that I sensed the Lord was impressing on my heart that while I have been extraordinarily blessed and humbled to have started Radiant, and been the lead pastor for almost eighteen years, it is time for me to “transition” to a support role, allowing someone younger with fresher ideas and energy to take the lead. This will allow me to focus more on my strengths in ministry (e.g. pastoral counseling, mentoring, preaching and teaching, and music wherever I am needed.) I also stated that over the next three to five years I would mentor someone, and gradually turn over more and more of the Senior Pastor responsibilities.
I didn’t realize at the time that the word “transition” would cause some confusion, and lead some to believe that I was saying I would be retiring and leaving Radiant. What I meant was that I would become a full-time associate pastor, remaining on staff as a paid position (though at a lower salary), but in more of a support role to the new Senior Pastor. In making this shift, I would relinquish my administrative duties, and the heavy lifting of the lead pastor role.
The leadership of our church (Pastors, Elders and Trustees) has been meeting over the last several months to outline a process by which the transition will take place. Here are the highlights of our discussions thus far:
· A transitional plan committee will be formed which will include pastors, elders and trustees, as well as at least one congregational member (as per the RCL Constitution & By-laws,) by the Annual Business meeting of the church on Wednesday, February 28, 2018, 6:30pm. Someone will be selected to head the transitional plan committee and oversee the process.
· Three sub-committees will be formed to handle the various responsibilities:
o Pastoral search committee – Headed by Pastor John. The leadership wanted everyone to know that we are open to the concept of a prospective new lead pastor arising from within or without our church.
o Campaign committee – (See below for further details)
o Contracts committee – Responsible for writing salary packages for the new Sr. Pastor, as well as Pastor John.
· An annual campaign that would include financial, spiritual and serving aspects would commence in early 2018. This campaign would be closely aligned with our RCL Vision statements—Renew, Grow, Serve.
· An FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) sheet will be formulated and distributed to all our members and regular attendees that will address many more details of the process, and a new special comment section will be included on the Connection Cards to allow the congregation to either ask additional questions or share suggestions.
· A timeline for the transition will be forthcoming so that everyone will know where we are in the process.
A true spirit of Christian unity and community has marked all of the leadership meetings thus far, and we sincerely believe that if this transition is bathed in prayer, it will not be something that is divisive or contentious, but rather something that glorifies the Lord and positions Radiant Christian Life Church for what God has for us in the future!
May God bless and guide us one and all!
In Christ’s love,
John A. Cernero, Senior Pastor
Transition Plan Frequently Asked Questions
Question: Is Pastor John retiring?
Answer: No. Pastor John will be transitioning to an associate pastor role. This will allow him to focus more on his strengths in ministry (e.g. pastoral counseling, mentoring, preaching, teaching, music and wherever needed.)
Question: What is the timeframe of the transition?
Answer: Pastor John initially stated a 3—5 year transition. The details of the transition including timing will be communicated through the transition planning committee starting in early 2018.
Question: Who will be on the transition planning committee?
Answer: The committee will include all Pastors, Elders and Trustees. In addition, one member of the congregation will be added during the Annual Business Meeting on February 28, 2018. The selection process will closely follow the process outlined in the RCL Constitution and By-Laws. Additional congregational members with specific skills may be added for certain tasks such as the formation of legal contracts.
Question: When will the transition plan kickoff?
Answer: Pastor, Elders and Trustees have already begun meeting to outline the plan. We will be finalizing the details of the plan over the next few months with an official kickoff date in January or February 2018.