Presbyterians love committees! We are a connectional church, which means that we sense the presence and guidance of God most clearly in community. Most of our decision-making is therefore done by groups prayerfully considering things together. In addition, we connect from the congregational level to a regional gathering of other churches in what we call a presbytery. Presbyteries have their own committees.
At the presbytery level we have the Commission on Ministry, COM. This group is made up of both pastors and elders from churches all around the area. Their job is to help serve the local congregations in their ministry, especially in the relationships that they have with pastors. Part of this support is in guiding the process of congregations finding pastors.
Closer to home in the local congregation we have the Congregational Nominating Committee, or CNC. This group is elected by the congregation and is responsible to the congregation; they do not report to the pastor or to Session. This is important because it is their job to organize the slates for officers and any pastor nominating committees that are needed in a given year. They are at work now to organize the Associate Pastor Nominating Committee, APNC, which will be asked to discern whom God is called as our next associate pastors. Like the CNC, the APNC reports directly to the congregation and is responsible for communicating with the COM throughout this search process.