At St. Peter’s December 14, 2009 call meeting, our Church Council President announced that the council had amended Pastor Glende’s job description to read “lead pastor,” and that we would be calling an “associate pastor.”
I moved to table the call because I believed that our congregation did not have enough information to ratify Pastor Glende as lead pastor, and call an associate. I believed that the council needed to better communicate with Pastor Christenson to better understand why he left after only seven months. Also, without going into any specifics, I cited a long letter that I had sent to the council and my pastors back at the beginning of November which raised important issues. I did not mention any of the specifics of my letter because I believed that that would be beyond the bounds of a call meeting.
Another layman asked whether there were additional actions or steps that needed to be taken before we issued a new call, and Pastor Glende replied, “If we had to do things, if there was anything that needed to take place before we could call again, then District President Engelbrecht wouldn’t allow us to issue a call.” District President Engelbrecht did provide our congregation with a call list of five candidates that he believed were suitable to be an associate pastor.
The argument against the motion was that neither Pastor Glende, nor our church council, nor District President Engelbrecht believed that any additional steps needed to be taken. District President Engelbrecht did attend and participate in our call meeting. When he was not speaking, he sat in the back, and chatted with Pastor Skorzewski.
The motion to table the call failed. However, it did receive a smattering of timid “ayes.” After the meeting, another layman estimated that the motion to table received about a third of the votes present. (I thought it probably received less than that, but there was no official count). St. Peter congregation did call Pastor Wayne Shevey to be our associate pastor with a unanimous vote. This is a divine call, and it is our prayer that God will bless St. Peter through this call.
On Thursday, December 17, 2009, I met with Pastor Glende, and he provided me with the church council’s official response to my letter. The council’s response was a letter that summarily and unanimously rejected every one of the concerns I had raised as being either false or without merit.
May the Lord be with his Church, his Bride, his Chosen People “to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20). “The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.” (Revelation 22:21).