We are in the process of prayerfully discerning the expansion of our Elder team and we’d like to invite your input.
In the Vineyard, Elders function as overseers who tend to the spiritual health and vision of the community. The Elder team, while not always elders in age, are seasoned leaders and followers of Jesus. There are two kinds of elders in Winnipeg Centre Vineyard – Pastoral Elders and Lay Elders. The Lay Elders (Ben & Debra Kelly, Paul & Sherry Ansloos and Krista & Cliff Heide) keep the big picture in mind and prayerfully seek God for direction and counsel regarding all macro matters relating to church-life. The Pastoral Elders (Riegers, Woods, Rademakers & Labuns) also embrace this role with the added responsibility of implementing the daily tasks associated with the macro. While all the current elders are married couples, this is not a requirement for prospective elders, nor is it even preferable.
Lay Elders meet monthly and commit to a 3-year term.
There are four steps in the process of adding new elders to our current team. There are also a number of considerations and requirements for elders.
The New Elder Process is:
- Nomination and Discernment (October). During this time the community and the elder team nominate those they think are currently functioning as elders (even if they don’t have the position). Prayerfully ask, “who do I naturally look to for counsel, support, care, etc?” Chances are, those are the people who are already functioning as elders. At the same time, the pastors and elders are prayerfully discerning if people qualify and are a good fit for the current team and season of life the church is in (see below for requirements and considerations).
- Proposal & Mutual Consideration (November). The staff will contact potential new elders and invite them to prayerfully consider. This is a period in which we see if this “seems good to us and the Holy Spirit”.
- Prospective Elder Period (December – March). This is a three-month period during which prospective elders come to monthly elder meetings and are in communication with staff. At the end of this period it’s determined if it’s a fit. If it is:
- Membership Vote (in March). Those who are formal members of WCV (in the Outer Circle or an equivalent) are able to vote on the prospective new elders. If the new elder is ratified, this begins their 3-year term. Bear in mind that this is a vote, not on who should become elders, but on whether those who’ve been identified via the above process are the right decision for the Vineyard at this time.
Requirements for Elders are:
- Biblical requirements for Eldership (1 Timothy 3, Titus 1)
- Be a member of WCV (Part of the Outer Circle or an equivalent). Walking out and dialoguing with our 15 Core Practices. Of particular note are: Devotion to Jesus (elders should be devoted to their walk with God), Circles of Sharing (a hallmark of eldership is hospitality) and Generosity (elders should be tithing to the local church).
- A good fit with the current team and the season the Vineyard is in. While there are many people who generally qualify as elders, the staff and current elders must prayerfully discern who is the best fit for right now. What skills and gift mix will best suit the team already? This is not a popularity contest – it is a serious process to discern who God has prepared and gifted to serve the whole community at this time.
Will you join us in this process? We value both your prayer and input. If you’d like to nominate someone please contact one of the pastors or email or call the office. Thanks!
Here is our current Elder team (both lay and pastoral elders):