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Coming to Terms

The immediate goal of coming to terms is to make certain everybody understands the arrangement—the same arrangement. The long-term goal is to be able to work together happily for years to come.
—Ed Bratcher

By the time a search committee makes their selection and the pastoral candidate has agreed, in theory at least, to come to a church, a long process has been concluded. At this point, however, a shorter but equally vital process is about to begin. It's time to talk about the terms of call.

Throughout the interview process, committee and candidate have each expressed their ideas and concerns. As they've come closer and closer to an agreement, they've made more and more assumptions based on what they've learned about each other. Coming to terms is, in part, the process of transforming those assumptions into assurances.

When we get to this point, we feel we're talking with friends. We've come to know the search committee during the "courtship" period. These good people represent the congregation ...

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