Associate Pastor Job Description and Candidates
Good news! On June 6, 2016 the Council of Christ Reformed Church unanimously voted to call Rev. Brad Lenzner as our Associate Pastor. We await the ratification of Rev. Lenzner's call by the congregation this coming Sunday, June 12th. We are grateful to God for leading us in this whole process of finding an Associate Pastor. God's good hand has been upon us.
United Reformed Churches of North American (URCNA) Church Order, Article 2 states that “The duties belonging to the office of minister of the Word consist of continuing in prayer and in the ministry of the Word, administering the sacraments, catechizing the youth, and assisting the elders in the shepherding and discipline of the congregation.”
Though the minister is tasked with the duties listed in the church order, the primary emphasis of the Associate Pastor is shepherding the flock. By ministering “house to house” (Acts 20:20-21), the Associate Pastor seeks to:
- Provide specialized pastoral care
- Disciple congregants
- Foster the communion of saints
Worship and Preaching
- Fill in for the senior pastor when absent or on summer sabbatical by leading the Sunday morning worship: giving the announcements, offering the pastoral prayer, preaching, and administering the sacraments.
- When planning and preparing for the Sunday worship service, adjunct tasks include hymn selection and oversight of the choir director and organist.
- Teach the adult Sunday school class before the Sunday morning worship service.
- As needed, catechize the church members from the Three Forms of Unity in the Sunday afternoon service.
- Provide specialized pastoral care, particularly in times of crises (for example death, marital conflicts, hospitalization), suffering (including doubt, depression, anxiety, old age), and life changes (for example new baby, newlyweds, graduates, relocation)
- Disciple congregants by practicing consistent, systematic, pastoral visitation of and interaction with the congregation. Keeping office hours may be a way to consistently counsel and pray with newly married couples, expectant parents, and families.
- Foster the communion of saints by editing and publishing a monthly “The Commons” including calendar of important dates (such as birthdays, anniversaries, church functions), list of prayer needs, and other articles including theological topics, book recommendations, council/classis/synod updates, “getting-to-know-you” articles of new members, recent graduates, new church officers, missionaries, etc..
- Engage in prompt follow-up and contact of visitors to the church as well as maintain regular, systematic contact with church members.
- Participate in the monthly council and consistory meetings, and as needed prepare an agenda and prayer list and conduct these meetings.
- Prepare a report of pastoral activities for the monthly council meeting.
- As needed, serve as minister delegate to classis or synod.
Job Requirements and Qualifications
Education and Training
- Graduate of an accredited four-year college or university plus a post-graduate degree from an accredited Reformed or Presbyterian seminary in pastoral ministry.
- Must be ordained in compliance with Articles 3-9 of the URCNA Church Order.
- Subscribe to and abide by the Three Forms of Unity, the confessional standards of the URCNA.
- Abide by the Church Order of the URCNA.
- Recognize the importance of prayer and have discipline to pray regularly for church members, staff, and missions.
- Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with church staff and members.
- Possess excellent interpersonal skills and tact.
- Possess effective oral and written communication skills.
- This is a full time, exempt, salaried position and requires working weekends and other irregular hours.
- Reports to Staff Oversight for employment benefits and salary and is under the oversight of the Consistory for life and doctrine.
- Meets at least once a year with Staff Oversight to review job performance.
- Salary increases are approved by the church Council absent those employees currently serving on the Council.
- Paid vacation and sick leave are provided based on years of service.
- Yearly budget quotas are provided in the church’s annual budget for travel and food expenses related to the pastoral care of church members.
Associate Pastor Candidates
Rev. Brad Lenzner
My Spiritual Development and Call to the Ministry:
"Teach me your way, 0 LORD, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name. I give thanks to you, 0 Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever. For great is your steadfast love toward me; you have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol" (Psalm 86:11-13). As I reflect upon my spiritual development and call to the ministry I cannot help but stand amazed at the goodness of God and his faithfulness to me in Christ. I am grateful to him for his mysterious providence through which he has brought me both sorrow and joy. Yes, I am thankful even for the sorrows because the Lord has been true to his promise found in his Word, "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28).
One such sorrowful event that the Lord has worked for good in my life is the divorce of my parents when I was a little boy. There are few things that have influenced me more than that event. While it contributed to great heartache at a young age (and throughout much of my childhood), the lurking benefit in it was that it taught me early on that this world is not as it should be. It is broken. It taught me not to anchor my desire for wholeness in the things of this world. It taught me to look past the temporary veneer of this age to the eternal age to come in heaven. I did not come to this conclusion until I was older but, looking back, it is clear as day to me. The questions in my young mind at the time, "God, where are you? Why did you allow my parents' divorce to happen to me?" drove me to recognize that lasting satisfaction and contentment in this life ultimately could be found only in Christ.
When I was a high school senior I moved away from my mother, in Michigan, with whom I grew up, to live with my father in California. It was during this season that I heard and received the Good News of Jesus Christ at school through a student in my math class. She explained who Jesus is and how much God loves sinners through him. The world began to make more sense to me. I realized as I read the Bible that the world is fallen because of sin and that I participated in and contributed to that falleness. I learned that God the Father loved the world and me so much that he sent his one and only Son to live a righteous life in my place, die on the cross for my sins, and rise again on the third day to give me eternal life God, despite my sin, graciously adopted me into his family through faith in Jesus Christ. That is the point at which I can look back over my broken family life and see the fatherly hand of God using my parents' divorce for good to lead me to himself.
I had the desire to share my experience of God's love, forgiveness, and care with everyone and still do. The more I read Scripture the more I longed for people to understand it. Thus began what I perceive to be the initial stages of an internal call from the Lord to the ordained ministry. After I graduated from high school I attended a small, non-denominational, Bible school (Calvary Chapel Bible College in Twin Peaks, CA) for a time where my desire to teach God's Word continued to grow. This is also where I whole-heartedly embraced the doctrines of grace, which CCBC aggressively taught against. The Lord used the weekly White Horse Inn radio broadcast greatly to convince me that Calvinism is nothing other than the teaching of the Bible concerning salvation. This launched me on the journey to discovering, understanding, and joyfully embracing the wider breadth of Reformed theology and piety beyond the doctrines of grace in salvation.
Not long after my time at Bible school I moved to Maryland. It was there that an older friend at church, Dan Bryant, encouraged me to seek formal training for the ministry at a seminary. So I enrolled at the University of Maryland in College Park in order to earn the requisite Bachelor degree for entry into seminary. While on campus I got involved with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship where I led Bible studies and organized evangelistic outreaches. My desire to encourage and comfort people with the Word of God in the midst of all their troubles and difficulties continued to develop. By God's grace, it seemed that people were growing in their understanding of the Bible, Reformed Theology, and Christianity in general through my teaching. People continued to encourage me to go to seminary.
After college I moved back to California to work off my student loans before enrolling in seminary. It was during this time that I was married. But sadly I was stung by divorce once again. I was crushed and for a time I gave up hope of pursuing the ministry because I thought this disqualified me from ordination even though it was my unbelieving spouse who left me for unbiblical reasons. However, through the merciful ministry of the consistory of Oceanside United Reformed Church, the Lord refreshed me with his free grace and forgiveness in Christ. With hindsight, I now see how the Lord used that difficult time in my life to help me bring the same comfort of the Gospel to hurting souls that I myself have received. The OURC Consistory encouraged me to enroll at Westminster Seminary in California and to see what the Lord would
do. So I enrolled in 2003 and graduated with a Masters of Divinity degree from WSCAL in 2007.
My faith in Christ and understanding of the Bible grew tremendously during seminary through the teaching of professors like Dr. Scott Clark, Dr. Michael Horton, Dr. Robert Godfrey, and several others. My desire (and aptitude) for the ministry continued to grow and develop during seminary. After serving in various pastoral internships for a few years I received an external call from the Lord through his Church to the ordained ministry in 2010 when I was installed as a Minister of Word and Sacrament (at Emmanuel United Reformed Church in Hanford, CA.) in the United Reformed Churches in North America (URCNA). Since then I have also served as a church planter in the URCNA at Grand River Reformation Church in Rifle, CO. My work in Rifle concluded in August, 2014.
In January, 2016 Christ United Reformed Church in Santee, CA called me to be an Associate Minister. I am an active member of the CURC Consistory, primarily tasked with assisting the elders in the shepherding of the congregation. I have been assigned a district of members to help oversee. I will preach and teach Sunday school occasionally as needed and am currently leading a mid-week home fellowship group through the book of Romans. This is an unpaid call and the Consistory has encouraged me to actively pursue a full-time, paid call to a post somewhere in Christ's Kingdom. It is my desire to do so and continue to help people find all their comfort in Christ from the Word of God while in the midst of their pilgrim sufferings and hardships.
My wife, Samantha, and I have been married for seven years and have a healthy relationship. We are two sinners saved by God's grace who daily ask for, and extend, forgiveness to one another. We love, respect, and honor each other deeply. Samantha is a true gift from God to me and it is my desire always to be the same to her. We are blessed to have our little boy, Elijah, who is two and a half years old. We are also blessed to have our little girl, Aubrielle, who is six months old. I love being their father!
As a family, we consistently attend the means of grace twice on the Lord's Day at Christ URC and frequently open our home up for fellowship and hospitality. I actively lead my family in Bible reading, singing, catechizing, and praying during the week. My wife diligently reinforces our catechizing of Elijah, who is well on his way to memorizing Q&A 1 of the Heidelberg Catechism and the Lord's Prayer, and sings the Doxology and Gloria Patri in a way only a two year old can do. We look forward to doing the same with Aubrielle and as many children as the Lord might grant us in his providence.
Rev. Lenzner and his family are currently members of Christ United Reformed Church in Santee, CA where you can listen to his most recent sermons. You can listen to more of Rev. Lenzner's sermons at Sermon Audio. Here is a video of Rev. Lenzner preaching on The Word Became Flesh and Dwelt Among Us from John 1:14 (December 6, 2015). Turn the volume up when you listen to this video.
Rev. Danny Hyde
I was born on December 17, 1974 at Long Beach Memorial Hospital. Soon after I was baptized in the Roman Catholic Church because my mother was raised Roman Catholic. I then grew up mostly in Cypress, during which time my father was converted through Calvary Chapel, Costa Mesa. My earliest memories of church are of the old Friday movie night at Big Calvary, and leaving scared to death from A Thief in the Night! We then moved to Redondo Beach when I was 9 and my parents separated a year later. Roughly from the time I was 9 until my conversion when I was 17, the only time I attended church was during holidays with my grandparents at a Catholic Church. But then my Dad gave his life back to Christ through the ministry of Hope Chapel, Hermosa Beach. When I was 17 I went to a mid-week evening service with him and was changed forever. If you've read my book, Welcome to a Reformed Church, you'll recall that I open up with a story about my first exposure to The White Horse Inn (pages xxiii-xxvi) after my conversion. That initial seed was planted and it came to fruit several years later, as I explain below.
After graduating from Redondo Union High School in 1993 I decided to stay close to home and go to a Christian college. So I chose Southern California College (now Vanguard University) on a basketball scholarship. Then I became disillusioned as a believer. The best "Christian" on my team was my Mormon roommate—yes, I said Mormon! This led me on a two-year journey from the Calvary Chapel-Foursquare Church-Assemblies of God experience that I knew, with stop offs in Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, as well as the cults such as Mormonism and Jehovah's Witnesses. All the while I was co-youth pastoring with my now wife, Karajean (a native of Mission Viejo whom I married in 1998), at a Pentecostal church in Santa Margarita. Then I met a theology professor who started handing me books by Luther, Calvin, and the whole gang of famous Reformation people. Through a classmate, I was re-introduced to The White Horse Inn—I still remember the sound of those hoof beats! After listening for weeks and months a man you know, Ken Samples, started up an alternative chapel service on campus. While hundreds and hundreds flocked to the Pentecostal service, a holy huddle gathered to study Augustine, Aquinas, Pascal, et. al. He invited me to Christ Reformed Church, but since I had youth pastor duties it was not for some time that I was able to get away and attend my first Reformed service. I was blown away. Karajean hated it but I was hooked (don't worry about her; I tell people she's now more Reformed than me). Where had a church like this been my short Christian life?
All this gave me the sense of calling to serve the Lord in any way he wanted. After graduating in 1997 I attended Westminster Seminary California, having been steered away from Fuller by my theology professor. God's providence is amazing, isn't it? I started off thinking I would finish an MA in theology, go get my MA in philosophy from San Diego State, and then get a PhD. But I had this sense that I could be of use to people like me, who grew up in SoCal and who needed the truth of the whole counsel of God. That led Karajean and I to go to a small URC in Iowa for the summer between my middle and last year at WSC to figure out if I could do this whole "pastor thing." I returned whole-heartedly desiring to plant a Reformed church near San Clemente, where Karajean and I were living. I told Mike Horton what I was thinking so he told me to call Kim. I did, but Kim explained that the Christian Reformed Church wasn't able and/or ready to plant. Discouraged, the very next Sunday at our home church, Escondido URC, Rev. Bill Green was in town. He did an adult Sunday school class and challenged EURC to plant a church in its own back yard. Behind us was a small group of people we had never met (at that time EURC was 900 people with two AM services) yelling out, "Plant in Oceanside." Karajean and I were stunned. I began working with Rev. Cammenga and the Council on a plan and we started in Mike Brown's living room in February 2000 and have continued ever since.
Karajean and I now have four children: Cyprian (11), Caiden (9), Daxton (6), and Sadie (3). Karajean is a tenured lecturer in the Department of Education at UCI as well as Director of the Irvine Math Project.
Rev. Hyde is an instructor of Systematic Theology and Missions at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, an Adjunct Instructor of Ministerial Studies at Mid-America Reformed Seminary, a member of the Advisory Council for Word & Deed, and an editor of Meet the Puritans. Rev. Hyde has written numerous books, including:
- God in Our Midst (Reformation Trust Publishing, 2012)
- Welcome to a Reformed Church (Reformation Trust Publishing, 2010)
- Why Believe in God (P & R Publishing, 2011)
- Jesus Loves the Little Children (Reformed Fellowship, Inc., 2006)
For a complete list of Rev. Hyde's book titles, visit Amazon.com
You can listen to Rev. Hyde's sermons at Sermon Audio. Rev. Hyde has also done radio broadcasts on Abounding Grace Radio and Renewing Your Mind and published articles in the Ligonier Tabletalk and Ligonier Blog.
Here is a video of him at the 2010 Ligonier West Coast Conference entitled, Once Lost, Now Found: How Reformed Theology Assures Us.
Your feedback and comments on any one of these candidates would be greatly appreciated. Your comments will be emailed to the members of the consistory.