This page is used to inform the congregation of Village Parkway Baptist Chuch and interested parties about the search for a new senior pastor.
As a Village Family, we trust in God. This is His church, He loves His church, He has a plan, His plans are always good, and they never fail. God has already selected the man to serve as the next Senior Pastor of VPBC and He will use the search process to show us who that man is.
Use the tabs below to check for updates and to learn about the process and people selected by our congregation to lead us through it.
The content of this page is updated frequently. Please check back often for more information.
Based on congregational election results, the new pastor has been confirmed.
Pastor Ryan is humbled, grateful, and excited for the opportunity to be considered for the position of Senior Pastor at Village Parkway. He recognizes the privilege that it is to seek God’s will with you for Village Parkway. Ryan has fond memories of his time serving the Village family as both Minister to Students and Associate Pastor of Education (2007-2014) and is excited about the possibility of serving VPBC again. He has been praying fervently for you, the staff, and his family.
After completing his degree in Mathematics at Texas A&M University, Ryan enrolled in the Master of Divinity program at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth. In 2021, he completed his Doctor of Ministry at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary specializing in church revitalization. Dr. Ryan’s passion is for the church, and church revitalization is the process of helping churches renew their mission, discover their vision, and strategically focus on implementing their passion. He has learned that this process must be guided by the Holy Spirit and bathed in prayer.
Ryan has served churches and ministries for over twenty years in the Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio, and Victoria areas. His vocational experience varies from parachurch chaplaincy to associate pastoral ministry to pastor. Throughout his service to the church, people have called him Pastor Ryan, RC, Brother Ryan, Ryan, Dr. Carpenter, and a host of other things. His desire is to be your pastor. Call him what you wish.
Ryan currently serves as pastor of First Baptist Church in Ganado, Texas. The Lord has used him to help FBC Ganado rediscover what the Bible says they are to do as a church, identify what motivates them in ministry, and see where God is taking them. Keeping God’s mission and vision in mind, his current focus has been to develop strategic actions with ministry teams to increase the church’s evangelistic presence in the community through outreach events and starting an after-school program.
God has blessed his ministry by allowing him to lead the Ganado ministerial alliance, moderate/serve his local Baptist Association, coordinate prayer walks and prayer services for the school and community, and serve as chaplain for the Ganado Police Department, the Ganado Volunteer Fire Department, and the Ganado ISD football program.
One of the greatest blessings Ryan received during his time at Southwestern was meeting his wife of 19 years, Carrie. Carrie is also a seminary graduate, holding a Master of Communications from Southwestern, and they have served together in ministry their entire married life. The Carpenters have three children: Cal, Lana, and Mindy. Cal, an avid sports fan and video game enthusiast, is in 9th grade. Lana, a burgeoning pianist with a love for the performing arts, is currently a 6th grader. Mindy, a sweet and spunky seven-year-old with a love for life, is in 2nd grade. They pray daily for God to bless their family and their friends and are thankful for God’s provision in their life.
In his free time, Ryan can be found spending time with his family, streaming something on TV, reading, walking and listening to podcasts, engaging in the shooting sports, or fishing.
Pastor Ryan is honored to be considered for the position of Senior Pastor and covets your prayers as he prays for and with you as we seek God’s purposes together.
Hallelujah!! Praise God!!
Your Pastor Search Team has spent the past nearly eight months praying, preparing, and persevering to the point of discovering the man whom God has prepared to be our new Senior Pastor.
The pathway to discovery has been both exciting and challenging for everyone in the church. Together we have had to experience a new level of listening to the Holy Spirit, of being extraordinarily patient, and of managing our expectations. For the search team this also has been a unique privilege and a gift.
The team, being in unanimous agreement, now is ready to announce whom God has identified to serve as our next Senior Pastor.
But before that we first want to make manifestly clear that identification of the new pastor is in no way a repudiation of either of our current pastors. Both Pastor John Turner and Pastor Nate Thomas have demonstrated their love of Christ, their love of His people, and their giftedness before the congregation. Both have exhibited the qualifications of a pastor as defined in 1 Timothy 3:1-7. We are privileged to have them serve at Village parkway and are glad to have them here. Clearly God called them here for His purposes, and they both have responded faithfully to that call.
This is not about anyone who applied or any of us. It is about God. More pointedly, it is about God’s placement of His servants as He deems fit. At this time, we firmly believe that God has deemed Dr. Ryan Carpenter fit to be the Senior Pastor of Village Parkway Baptist Church.
Pastor Carpenter (aka “RC”) has served during the past eight years as pastor of First Baptist Church of Ganado, Texas. Previous to that he served here at Village Parkway in both the positions currently filled by Nate and John; that is, first as Minister to Students, then as Associate Pastor of Education. We will be learning more about RC and his family very soon. Briefly, he and his wife Carrie have three children, spaced enough in age that Cal is entering high school, Lana is entering middle school, and Mindy is in elementary.
In two weeks—on 28 August—Pastor Carpenter will step into the pulpit as the culmination of a “In view to a call” weekend we will spend with RC and his family. At the end of that service the church will hold a Specially Called Business Meeting, during which church members will have the right and awesome privilege of voting whether or not to call Pastor Carpenter as Village Parkway’s Senior Pastor.
More information on that will be forthcoming but the weekend activities will include small group meetings with RC, an informal “meet and greet” with him and his family, and then Pastor Carpenter bringing the message to us on that Sunday morning.
Assuming your vote is “yes”, other activities will ensue over the following few weeks; we will keep you informed all along the way.
For now, we ask that everyone be in prayer for our church, for our pastors, and for the Carpenter family. Times of transition in churches often provide fuel for Satanic attacks in an attempt to create disruption and division.
Prayer is our most powerful and effective weapon against that.
Soli Deo Gloria – To God Alone be the Glory
IN VIEW OF A CALL SERVICE
Village Parkway Baptist Church has enjoyed 28 years under the leadership of Senior Pastor, Dr. Steve Branson. As such, for many of those in the congregation an “in view of a call” service is a first-time experience. During this “in view of a call” service, the Pastor Search Team is presenting to the congregation Pastor Ryan Carpenter as the new Senior Pastor of Village Parkway.
What does preaching “in view of a call” mean?
Simply, the recommended Senior Pastor will demonstrate, in accordance with 1 Timothy 3:2, he is “skillful in teaching”.
Other qualifications expressed in 1 Timothy 3:1-7, speak to his character. The Pastor Search Team is confident Pastor Ryan Carpenter meets all the scriptural qualifications based on a written questionnaire, two interviews, background checks, reference interviews, and examination of his credentials—all under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
How will the vote be conducted?
This is an awesome responsibility the members of Village Parkway take in bringing a new Senior Pastor to Village Parkway. Please be in prayer for your decision on this momentous occasion.
A few items to note: Only members will vote. If desired, contact the church office, prior to the service, to officially join the Village Parkway Congregation.
Directly following the “in view of a call” service, a Specially Called Business Meeting will be held. Votes will be a paper-based ballot, with choices of yes or no. Members of the congregation will be asked to sign their ballot as affirmation of their choice. Only signed ballots will be counted. Only members of the Pastor Search Team will see the ballots. All responses will be kept strictly confidential.
The results will be shared immediately with Pastor Ryan Carpenter, the Staff, and those members who wish to stay for the results. An Announcement will also be made Monday through the Village Parkway email distribution list and the Website.
The Pastor Search Team is following a process developed within Baptist communities and time-tested by numerous Southern Baptist churches. We are using guidebooks published by both SBC and Southern Baptists of Texas (SBTC), in conjunction with lessons learned and best practices gleaned from other churches who have travelled the path of pastor search. Additionally, we have consulted with mentors at both SBTC and San Antonio Baptist Association (SABA).
The list of activities provided here represents the team’s progress as of the day of posting, 03 March 2022. Many steps and actions already have been accomplished, and so are not listed below. Going forward, there will be numerous sub-tasks and activities also not listed below. In other words, these represent only major activities and milestones.
As we progress, the team will update the list by color-coding activities accomplished (green), activities in work (blue), and activities not yet started (black). Note that if the top candidate is already a VPBC staff member, many activities below will not be necessary. The search team welcomes questions or observations.
Develop profiles of the church (organization) and of the congregation (people)
Conduct a church-wide survey to create the congregational profile
Combine the survey results with Scriptural qualifications to develop a Pastor Profile
Develop related yet separate Pastor Qualifications and a Senior Pastor Position Description
Set “open” and “close” dates for receiving resumes
Seek referrals from the congregation
Post position open notifications to select (vetted) web sites and publications
Receive resumes for the stated period
Upon closing of the receiving period, assess resumes
Through a set of highly focused discussions, iteratively reduce the total number of resumes to the top few candidates
Verify all are still interested
Send questionnaire to each
Obtain permission to run background checks and contact references
Request web links to sermons, or DVDs; observe and assess sermons
Conduct background checks
Contact primary & secondary references
Evaluate questionnaire responses
Conduct a short, initial interview as appropriate
Pray intensely, discuss, decide on the top candidate
Contact candidate to confirm he is still considering VPBC
Provide information such as church documents the candidate requests
Discuss team observations
Conduct a final interview, including the candidate’s wife accompanying him if possible
Assuming all is “yes” at this point, coordinate setting a date for “in view of a call” weekend
Discuss and agree on a Compensation Package
Coordinate with the church staff to plan activities for the “call” weekend
Announce to the congregation the “call” weekend date and schedule of activities involving the candidate
“In View of a Call” weekend activities
Candidate leads the worship service Sunday morning (then is excused)
Congregation votes following the service, in a Special Called business meeting
Based on congregational election results, the new pastor has been confirmed.
Assist with new pastor onboarding and transition/relocation
Roy Theetge -Chair
Member of Village Parkway Baptist Church since 1992
Church Service Experience:
Sunday School Teacher
Strategic Planning Committee
Strategic Planning Working Group
Christian School Committee of Management
Hospitality Ministry Team
Offering Ushers Coordinator
Todd Sparrow - Vice-Chair
Member of Village Parkway Baptist Church since 2003
Church Service Experience:
Awana Sparks Director
Mission Trips to Costa Rica & Honduras
Marsha Murphy- Recorder/Internal Communications
Member of Village Parkway Baptist Church since 2007
Church Service Experience:
Vacation Bible School Volunteer
Fall Festival Volunteer
AWANA Secretary & Co-Director
Clean-Up Days Volunteer
Special Projects Volunteer
Previous Search Committees
Pedro Garcia — Finance Liaison
Member of Village Parkway Baptist Church since 2015
Church Service Experience:
Vacation Bible School Volunteer
Leaders In Training Discipleship Leader
Seasoned Saints Volunteer
Gina Krampe- Corresponding Secretary
Member of Village Parkway Baptist Church since 2004
Church Service Experience:
Sunday School Teacher
Welcome Center Volunteer
Previous Personnel Committe
Keith Menefee- Prayer Coordinator
Member of Village Parkway Baptist Church since 1994
Church Service Experience:
Building & Grounds Committe
Various Volunteer roles throughout the years
Kami Winkler- Technology Coordinator
Member of Village Parkway Baptist Church since 2013
Church Service Experience:
Children's Sunday School Teacher
Leaders in Training Discipleship Leader
Previous Search Committee
Vacation bible School Volunteer
Fall Festival Volunteer
Please fill this field.
Village Parkway Baptist Church Profile
Village Parkway Baptist Church (VPBC) of San Antonio, Texas, is a church family that values Biblical preaching and heartfelt. Overall, VPBC is a warm and welcoming church family who is serious about the Great Commission, and reaching the next generations in our community. We value expository preaching and practical community ministries. VPBC is a missional church, seeking to communicate God’s message of love and forgiveness through relevant preaching and teaching.
In 1981, VPBC was a church plant of Castle Hills First Baptist church (now known as Mission City Church). VPBC started by renting space in Timberwilde Elementary School, located in the nearby Great Northwest neighborhood. The church members themselves constructed much of the first building, which is now the fellowship hall wing of the facility. Through the years, other buildings have been added to the campus: the Education Wing (added to the Fellowship Hall), the Worship Center, and finally the stand-alone Education Buildings, which originally served the Village Parkway Christian School (which closed in recent years) and now continues to serve the Sunday School needs of the church. Overall, VPBC currently has approximately 44,000 square feet of building space on its 5.876-acre lot.
At 42-years-old, VPBC has seen the city of San Antonio evolve and grow, and we have done the same. VPBC now sits in an area that, at the church’s founding, was on the fringes of the city growth but now is well inside that frontier. The area is still vibrant and families are still attracted to it.
The current weekly in-person Sunday attendance is averaging 199. Pre-Covid, the weekly Sunday attendance was averaging 389. Like many modern churches, VPBC used the Covid years to better develop and maintain an online worship presence. This online presence was an integral part of the church’s identity and it continues to this day. The peak attendance for VPBC was during the period around 2010, sitting at 600-650. Baptisms in recent years have averaged 15-20 annually, down from 20-25 in previous years. Historically, VPBC has been considered to be a military-friendly church. The morale of the church family is positive and engaged. There is an excitement in the air and a fresh wind of expectation as we search for our next senior pastor.
In 2021 our total annual budget was set at $1.155 million, with our receipts totaling $1.091 million. Our final expenditures for the year were $1.17 million. This atypical overage was due to additional building maintenance and extra media expenditures. Village was able to handle these overages thanks to a budget surplus at the end of the previous fiscal year due to Covid-related PPP funds. As of February 2022, our receipts are at 51% and our expenses are at 55% of our budget set at $1.2 million.
VPBC has a long history of being a missions-oriented and service-minded church. Covid has indeed hampered those efforts, but we are hopeful to be in a position to renew those efforts in the near future. VPBC helped found Life Choices in 1996. This is a Christian based pro-life organization which is significantly supported by the church from inception to this day. VPBC partners with local organizations such as Mission of Hope (which helps provide necessities to those in need along the Texas/Mexico border), the Arabic Baptist Church of San Antonio and Children’s Hunger Fund. VPBC participates with annual giving opportunities such as Lottie Moon, Annie Armstrong, and Operation Christmas Child. Additionally, we have regularly sent mission teams to Costa Rica and Honduras in partnership with missionaries in those respective countries. These international missions have been on hold for the last couple of years due to Covid, however we look forward to sending out teams again in the near future. Further information is available on our website. We believe in encouraging people to discover, develop, nurture, and use their God-given gifts and talents for Kingdom purposes. Whether in the Praise Band or the Choir, whether participating in Adult, Senior Adult or Youth or Children’s Ministries, the congregation has a long history of seeking out the appropriate ministry in which their gifts can best be used to bring glory to God.
Thank you all for your continued prayers, patience, kind words and reflection of God’s spirit. These past nine months for our church and individuals within the church has been challenging. We are grateful to continue to see God’s hand on this process and in our lives. Praise God, He is in control.
Sunday, August 28th, Village Parkway, held a Specially Called Business meeting per the terms of the By Laws to vote on Calling a new Senior Pastor to Village Parkway. The congregation had the opportunity to meet with Pastor Ryan Carpenter and his family through several events both Saturday and Sunday and hear Pastor Carpenter as he delivered God’s message in the pulpit. Following the message on Sunday morning, a Business Meeting was called and the congregation voted by secret ballot to call Pastor Ryan Carpenter as our next Senior Pastor. Pastor Carpenter accepted that calling.
Over the next few weeks, Pastor Carpenter will be working with his current church in a time of transition and with his family to move to San Antonio. This will be a challenging time for him, his family and his current church. We appreciate your prayers for his church, for his family, for decisions on places to live and for school for his kids. Transitions can be tough, but we know God is in control.
While Pastor Ryan is transitioning to San Antonio, we are so very grateful for the continued ministry of Pastor John and Pastor Nate, who will continue to handle the Senior Pastor duties and their current ministries. We are overwhelmingly grateful to the Thomases, the Turners and the entire staff for all they have done for Village Parkway. We are so very excited to see God continue to work in their lives and the lives of all at Village Parkway. We see so much of God’s grace and love reflected in their lives. We are thankful God has chosen them for this time.
Over the next several weeks, we will continue to provide updates as we move into the phase of Welcoming Pastor Ryan Carpenter and his family to Village Parkway.
It has been over a month since the search team last shared information regarding the progress of the search process. We know this seeming silence has been frustrating, but the team has nonetheless been very active. We now are in a most critical phase, very near the point of revelation to the church. While it is still premature to mention any name, it is vitally important for all of us to keep at the top of our prayer lists the church body, the pastors, the staff, and the search team. Scripture is clear that Satan ALWAYS is looking to cause or take advantage of disruption among Gods people. (For example, 1 Peter 5:6-9; Ephesians 6:10-18; James 4:7,) We may be most vulnerable at this stage of the process. Therefore we ask you to suit up with the full armor of God and battle for us every day.
Your Pastor Search Team for the past few weeks have been working diligently and prayerfully on narrowing the field of senior pastor candidates. We most recently have identified six pastors (of the original 65) who demonstrate the qualities and characteristics of the profile of the pastor the church has indicated would be a “fit” for Village Parkway. We would like to claim that we have arrived at this phase due to the team’s great knowledge, skills and abilities, but that would not be true. We are convinced that God has indeed been guiding our process to this most crucial stage for His purpose and to His glory.
Now, we will further intensify our focus on the top three candidates. This focus will include posing questionnaires to each pastor, conducting background checks, interviewing references, and finally conducting interviews with the pastors (and wives) themselves.
As you may surmise, all of that will take appropriate time to accomplish, so we are not yet in position to provide timelines. Therefore, we very much appreciate your continued patience and, most especially, your prayers. As ever, we invite your questions or comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or simply approach any of us in person.
On May 14 the search team closed the 30-day window for receipt of candidate pastors’ resumes. We received expressions of interest from 64 God-fearing men (including two of our own) – a praise, since both SBTC and SABA mentors advised us to anticipate up to 300 resumes. Since God has prepared the next VPBC Senior Pastor while assigning us the privilege of recognizing him, fewer resumes means it will be somewhat easier to make that recognition. Over the past week the team prayerfully examined and assessed every resume.
During our scheduled meeting this week (on 22 May) the team will discuss and identify which pastor candidates will continue into more in-depth consideration, leading us along the path of iteratively reducing the number of candidates. While we are persistent we also endeavor to pay close attention to the leading of the Holy Spirit. We know that God has a plan and that He is unfolding it perfectly in accord with His will; we do not want to run ahead and find ourselves in a place (metaphorically) where God does not intend. Therefore we pray often—both individually and during meetings—for His guidance and the wisdom to follow that.
We appreciate your ongoing prayers for the team, for the VPBC staff, for the church, for all of the pastors seeking a new position, and especially for the one man whom God already has selected.
The PST is progressing along the path leading to the discovery of the man God has selected to be our next Senior Pastor. Currently we are working on finalizing a survey designed to give you a voice into the description of the desired qualifications, character traits, and theological convictions of our next pastor (such description called a Profile). In the coming weeks, the survey will be available both on the VPBC web site (preferred method), emailed to VPBC distribution list and in paper form available at the Welcome Desk in the church foyer. More information will be provided as we approach the date to open the survey.
Combining the Pastor Profile with a profile of the church, Scriptural descriptions of a pastor, and guidance of the Holy Spirt, we will develop separate qualifications and position descriptions. Information from all of these sources will be used to create the public announcement of the open position and to develop the criteria by which resumes will be assessed.
Each of these steps takes time, effort, team discussions, and prayer. We are committed to being patient, intentional, methodical, and as efficient as practical. We do not want to get ahead of God’s plan at any step along the way, but neither do we want to lag behind God’s leading. We are endeavoring to be, at any given moment, in the right place, at the right time from God’s perspective.
Once we begin receiving resumes they will be accepted for about 30 to 45 days from the date we post the announcement. Various mentors advise against reviewing or assessing resumes as they arrive but to engage in that process once the announcement is closed. The team will be working during that interim, to acknowledge and communicate with pastors who have submitted resumes, to confirm the details of the assessment process and the criteria for assessment and to finalize candidate questionnaires and interview questions.
We will continue to report to you as we move along this path and highlight what to anticipate next. At any time you may ask questions about any aspect of this process: use the VPBC web site form; send e-mail to the email@example.com or speak directly with any team member.
Keep us accountable. The team is not independent; we are representing every member of VPBC.
Finally (but in fact firstly) pray for the team, for our staff, for our church, and for the pastor whom God is sending to us.
We had a wonderful weekend celebrating Pastor Steve and Jan. Thank you all for making the celebration such a wonderful success. As we look to the future and plan for a transition to a new Senior Pastor, we know God is in control and has our church in view.
For we know God causes all things to work together for good, to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)
Our guiding principle: God’s Man, in God’s Time, no Exceptions. We appreciate your prayers and your patience as we follow God’s plan for this transition. We ask specifically for your continued prayers for the Pastor Search team and the new Pastor that God will lead to Village Parkway.
Where we are:
The Pastor Search Team has been busy over the past month praying for guidance, meeting with the VPBC staff, meeting with advisers from the Southern Baptist Texas Convention and San Antonio Baptist Association, identifying specific tasks within a well-established process and developing action plans to implement that process.
Where we are going:
In the coming weeks, you will be given the opportunity to complete a Senior Pastor Profile survey. As we receive resumes from potential candidates, we will use the Senior Pastor Profile to narrow the field of candidates and help us listen to God’s plan for God’s man.
We believe through prayer and a focus on the Profile, God will show us the Senior Pastor God is leading to Village Parkway.
Please pray for us over the coming weeks as we finalize the survey. Our prayer is that God’s hand is on the process of drafting the survey, so that all in the Congregation feels heard and a part of the process. Please also be in prayer for your own responses to the survey and that God will lead us, as His Body, to the profile of God’s man chosen to lead Village Parkway for many years to come.
In closing, we appreciate your prayers, your patience, and your support as we identify God’s will for the next Senior Pastor of Village Parkway.
If you have any questions, concerns or want to offer specific prayerful feedback, please email the Pastor Search Team at: firstname.lastname@example.org or use the Contact Us link on the Pastor Search page.
“There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every matter under heaven—” [Ecclesiastes 3:1]. For all churches, there comes the time when the Pastor’s service to that congregation comes to an end. We praise God, that we, unlike too many churches today, have been blessed with a Pastor who is retiring after having served faithfully and lovingly at Village Parkway for 28 years. According to statistics, only about 10% of Southern Baptist Ministers remain in the ministry to retirement and the tenure of a Southern Baptist Minister in a given church is about 4 years. Ponder on that. God has blessed both Village Parkway and the Branson family with this gift!
Village Parkway now is entering a new season, and in God’s timing, will have a new pastor. To guide us in connecting with a new pastor, the church has formed a Pastor Search Team and identified seven members to assist with the search process. Members are: Gina Krampe, Kami Winkler, Keith Menefee, Marsha Murphy, Pedro Garcia, Roy Theetge and Todd Sparrow.
The Search Team will need help in very many ways. First and foremost we need your prayers—continuous—for the church, for the Team (individually as well as collectively), and for whomever God is preparing to be our new pastor. Equally important is that we need God’s help, so praying for us to seek God’s will and to be submissive to the leading of the Holy Spirit is paramount. We welcome your input, cherish your support and ask for your patience during this process. Finally we will utilize the resources from our state and local associations (SBTC and SABA).
Praise God; Steve is leaving behind a strong church. We are sound in body and spirit. We have a great staff, both ministerial and support. There are no major issues facing Village Parkway in the foreseeable future. Many pastors leave behind broken relationships, contention among staff members, and financial burdens. God has truly blessed Village Parkway!
Because Village has so many blessings, the task set before the Search Team will not be as burdensome and challenging as is experienced by very many others. That being said, we do sense the awesomeness of the responsibility and recognize that there are (and likely will be) some challenges to be addressed and surmounted. We are following the time-tested pastor search process, covered in prayer. God will lead us in His direction to a point where we meet the man God is preparing.
The Search Team has started the process, with our first meeting having taken place on Sunday, December 19th. Our next meeting is scheduled for Sunday, January 16th. Thereafter, we plan to meet every two weeks, but will be agile and adjust if warranted.
A lot of the literature regarding the search process gives 12-24 months to identify a new pastor. God’s timing and our patience are key elements of the process. Our prayer (and we ask for your prayer as well) is for a much shorter timeline. Village Parkway is blessed with gifted Pastors who will rotate in the pulpit while we complete the search process.
As we move into the process, we will provide updates. These will be mostly in the form of posting to the church web site and blast-emails as appropriate. Verbal reports to the congregation (from the pulpit on a Sunday morning) will be given when there is significant information to share. A Sunday morning update will be given once the team has met the potential new pastor, and both he and we are ready to share with the congregation.
In closing this report, we want to emphasize that the Search Team is not selecting a new pastor. God is doing that. We are merely identifying God’s will and then introducing the prospective Pastor to the membership for a vote. In the meantime, prayer, prayer, prayer...
The Senior Pastor of VPBC embodies the following qualities, character traits, beliefs, and experience. In that there is no one except Jesus Christ who is (ever was, ever shall be) perfect, VPBC does not demand perfection in the expressed characteristics of our Senior Pastor. The church does expect demonstrated fruit in these areas, given that we are ever growing more and more into the image of Christ. Where the Pastor honestly recognizes limitations, the church does expect that he is forthcoming regarding those limitations and is diligently at work strengthening any such area.
VPBC’s Senior Pastor is firmly and unmistakably called by Jesus Christ and is under conviction to shepherd the flock. He is a bold preacher, or proclaimer, of the good news of Christ. He has an unwavering dedication to the theology and doctrines of God as expressed in the Scriptures. He is a man who preaches the Word and teaches the Truth as an outflowing of graciousness from a shepherd’s heart.
The order of priority for his life is: serving God first and foremost; then taking care of his family; thirdly shepherding the flock of Jesus Christ; and finally, being a friend and neighbor to all others. He does not neglect himself in this regard, but he does have and reflects the attitude of considering others to be of greater importance than himself.
He has demonstrated in prior pastorates an ability to build, encourage and nurture relationships across – as well as among – generational groups within the church. He wholeheartedly supports ministries and missions and endeavors to equip the saints for service as appropriate.
The VPBC Senior Pastor is not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and stands firm on God’s perspective regarding cultural issues of the day. He is uncompromising in affirming and sharing God’s Truth in this regard, however he does so with love and compassion, understanding the impact such issues may have in the lives of church members and our community.
The Pastor is passionate about all the following, without neglecting one in favor of another: prayer, worship, fellowship, Biblical teaching, discipleship, evangelism, and stewardship. He takes a whole-Bible, whole-church, whole-person approach to all his pastoral responsibilities.
The VPBC Senior Pastor has internalized and embodies key Scriptures such as 1 Timothy 3:1-7, Titus 1:5-9, 1 Peter 5:1-5, 1 Corinthians 13:4-5, and Galatians 5:22-23, without any diminishment or neglect of the whole counsel of God.
He is a wise and humble leader of VPBC in its diverse activities, relying on staff, Deacons, and other lay leaders to inform and strengthen his leadership. He seeks counsel of the Deacons in all matters impacting the life of the congregation and the functioning of the church, ensuring that decisions in such regard are collaborative.
Our pastor may not have been a Christian nor specifically aligned with the Southern Baptist tradition his entire life, but in his calling he will have been ordained in a Southern Baptist church. He affirms in its entirety the Baptist Faith & Message 2000.
He has undertaken diligently to gain an appropriate education at a school accredited by the Association of Theological Schools, earning at least a Master of Divinity degree. As a life-long learner he continues to seek to know Christ more deeply through prayer, study of God’s Word, and study about God’s Word.
Our Senior Pastor will have grown into the man as described above through experience serving in a Southern Baptist church as at least an Associate Pastor for a minimum of five years, with at least three years as Senior Pastor. In all his previous callings, his service honored God, honored his family, honored his congregation, and honored himself. In other words, he is a man of deep and unshakable integrity, above reproach.
Pastor Profile Q&A
The week of April 3rd, the Pastor Search Team will be sharing with the membership a Senior Pastor Profile. The Profile will be available in multiple media formats (e-mail, web site, info handout). What will a Pastor Profile accomplish? The Pastor Search team offers the following in a Q&A format.
Q: What is the Pastor Profile?
A: The Pastor Profile is a somewhat broad narrative describing required and desired characteristics of the next Senior Pastor of Village Parkway Baptist Church. There are other documents which address specifically Qualifications and Position Description.
Q: How was it developed?
A: The Pastor Profile was developed through Biblical study, prayer, feedback of the congregation and staff through surveys, the experience of team members, and search team member discussions. During discussions the team was reminded to set aside personal preferences, to filter considerations through non-negotiable Scriptural qualifications, and to focus on the best fit for VPBC.
Q: What will it be used for? / What is the purpose?
A: The Pastor Profile will be one input to the more specific Qualifications and Position Description documents. All of these collectively will be used to develop the position opening announcement which will be posted on select web sites (hosted by SBC and SBTC). This interrelated set of documents will help to ensure that a candidate pastor clearly understands the qualifications and characteristics necessary to fulfill the role of VPBC Senior Pastor. They will also aid the search team in the resume screening and candidate interviewing phases of the search process.
Q: What are we (the congregation) to do with this information?
A: The Senior Pastor Profile is presented to the congregation for prayerful review and comment. Each congregation member should review the Profile, including Scriptural references. Pray over the Profile and discern whether this addresses God’s expectations of our Senior Pastor. Provide feedback via the Pastor Search page on VPBC.net, or by e-mail to email@example.com. We will accept comments until April 9th.
This is a key milestone on our path to meeting the man God is sending to be the next Senior Pastor of VPBC. Therefore, we look forward to your comments and prayers, most specifically that we remain under conviction in our responsibility, responsive to the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and keeping focused on the goal which God has set before us to identify God’s man in God’s time.
Pastor Search Team
SENIOR PASTOR QUALIFICATIONS
Before ever standing in the pulpit of Village Parkway Baptist Church a pastor must have had an unequivocally clear and compelling divine call by God to the ministry (for example, Acts 13:2, 1 Corinthians 9:16).
God calls out these specific, non-negotiable character qualifications of an elder or overseer (pastor) in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 (NASB; also reference to 2 Timothy 2:24-25 and Titus 1:5-9). Therefore, the Senior Pastor of Village Parkway Baptist Church will be a man who measures up to these at the very least. “Measures up” does not require perfection, but does require fidelity to, and demonstrable fruit in, each qualification.
Above reproach (most essential)
Husband of one wife
Skillful in teaching
Not overindulging in wine
Not a bully, but gentle
Free from the love of money
Manages his own household well
Keeping his children under control with all dignity
Not a new convert
Good reputation with those outside the church
ADDITIONAL SCRIPTURAL QUALIFICATIONS
The pastor is under conviction that the Bible is God’s Word, that it is true from Genesis to Revelation, and that it is the sole authoritative source for spiritual understanding and growth (2 Timothy 3:16-17, Romans 15:4, 2 Peter 1:20-21).
The pastor teaches and preaches the whole counsel of God without omittance, exclusion or shame (Romans 1:16, 2 Timothy 2:15, 2 Timothy 4:2, Titus 1:9).
The pastor has the heart of a shepherd and is motivated to love, guide, and protect the flock (1 Peter 5:1-4, Acts 20:28, Psalm 78:72, John 21:15-17, Psalm 23).
The pastor exhibits the fruit of the spirit as expressed in Galatians 5:22-23.
The pastor has a comprehensive prayer life (1 Timothy 2:1-2).
Ordination: Since accepting Christ as Lord and Savior, the pastor was ordained to the pastorate in a Southern Baptist-affiliated church.
Doctrinal Stance: The pastor is conversant with the Baptist Faith & Message 2000 and agrees with the doctrinal teachings expressed or implied therein. As to the cultural issues of the day, the pastor affirms God’s Word against even the most challenging pressures, and he does so with understanding and compassion for those affected by such issues.
Philosophy of Ministry: The pastor will have developed a philosophy of ministry which comprehends the other qualifications expressed herein and that fits the personality of VPBC.
Spiritual Gifts: The pastor will have demonstrated fruit in the gifts of (at least) leading, teaching, serving, and encouraging.
Practical Skills & Abilities: The pastor will have experience demonstrating skills in, at the very least, counseling, conflict resolution, church administration, and financial management.
Leadership Style: The pastor leads but does so humbly with a collaborative and cooperative spirit, taking counsel with the deacons, staff, and ministry leaders, as appropriate, for all major decisions.
Experience: The pastor should have at least five (5) years’ continuous experience as an ordained pastor or associate in at least one SBC-affiliated church of a size similar to VPBC. At least three (3) years will have been in the role of Senior Pastor.
Education: The pastor will have earned at least a Master of Divinity or Theology degree from an Association of Theological Schools-accredited seminary or Bible college.
Affiliations: The pastor is willing to affiliate and cooperate with San Antonio Baptist Association, Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, and Southern Baptist Convention. Cooperation does not necessarily imply absolute agreement with everything each of those associations says or does.
While Christ is head of the Church, the church body has authority (exercised representationally by the Deacons, in consultation with the Personnel Committee) over the Senior Pastor who, in turn, has authority over other ministerial and support staff members. The Pastor, in cooperation with the Deacons, is responsible for leading the church to function as a New Testament church. The Pastor leads the congregation, the organizations, and the church staff to perform the tasks to which they are called and serves as leader of pastoral ministries of Village Parkway.
The Senior Pastor provides spiritual leadership to the congregation through Biblically sound preaching, discipleship, and exemplification of godly character. He demonstrates a high level of competency and excellence in the study of the Scriptures, church leadership and organization. He endeavors to lead VPBC members to fulfill both the Great Commission and the Great Commandment by equipping them to carry out the five functions of the New Testament church: worship, ministry, fellowship, discipleship, and evangelism.
The Senior Pastor is called, ordained, set apart by God to the gospel ministry, evangelical in theology, and is committed to living and serving in a manner consistent with the standards of a pastor as set forth in Scripture.
Coordinate with the other staff pastors to set the preaching schedule for worship services
Serve as the primary proclaimer on Sunday mornings, and ensure that the pulpit is filled by faithful preachers when absent
Lead Sunday morning worship in a way that engages the congregation spiritually, intellectually, and emotionally, motivating commitment and action
Administer the ordinances of the Lord’s Supper at least once a month and Believer’s Baptism as needed
Lead in planning special services
Work closely with the Music Ministry to integrate music into worship services and other church events
Model the commands and examples of Scripture during public prayer at church gatherings
Lead the church in a culture of prayer, in which members regularly pray for one another and the world
Shepherd (with other staff pastors) the congregation by visiting, counseling, and praying for members and prospective members in their life circumstances (e.g., hospitalized, in long-term care, at home)
Provide personal counseling, and make referrals to competent outside individuals or agencies when needed (marital & premarital; bereavement; crisis; relationship challenges; life struggles, etc.)
Lead in celebrations and other significant life events (e.g., baby dedications, memorial services, funerals) as appropriate
Perform weddings for members, within Scriptural strictures
Oversee all church discipline matters, demonstrating strong problem solving, conflict resolution, and listening skills
Lead midweek services for prayer and Bible study
Provide general oversight of Christian education in the church, supporting the efforts of other pastors (primarily the Associate Pastor for Education) who are directly responsible for those programs
Oversee instruction to new members, deacons, trustees and staff in discipleship and leadership
Leadership / Administration
Coordinate planning of church activities with staff members and deacons
Schedule and lead weekly staff meetings and annual staff retreats
Plan the church calendar to keep staff informed of future events and topics
Provide oversight of staff and others in their responsibilities
Ensure the church’s operations and systems are kept current
Serve as the chief officer of the church in executing, with the staff and deacons, the policies and mandates duly approved by the congregation
Assist with church financial matters, such as advising on the annual church budget and approving expenses that do not require congregational approval
Oversee the Deacon ministry; communicate church needs to the deacons and delegate appropriate tasks to the Deacon body
Act as moderator of the church business meetings (unless another leader is elected moderator)
Serve as an ex-officio member of all committees, advising and providing mentorship as appropriate
Model stewardship for the congregation
Work with the appropriate ministries and committees to promote, educate and advocate responsible biblical stewardship in the congregation
Lead the staff and the church in a program of evangelism and outreach
Coordinate efforts in managing, evaluating, and expanding outreach programs
Plan evangelism events throughout the year to engage the community with the Gospel of Jesus Christ
Lead the church to understand, embrace, and accomplish its mission to make disciples in San Antonio, Texas, the United States, and the world
Assist the church organizations in providing opportunities for members to be directly involved in missions and ministry
Coordinate with ministerial staff to conduct membership interviews, recommend candidates for the church’s affirmation of membership, and assist transitioning members with finding a new church home
Encourage members to discern their own spiritual gifts, develop their gifts and their own leadership abilities, and engage in the ministries to which they are called
Provide oversight over all internal communications with the congregation through articles or announcements, written and spoken
Participate with SABA, SBTC, and SBC leaders in matters of mutual interest and concern, and to support the work of Southern Baptist missions and the Cooperative Program
Serve as spokesperson for VPBC in all dealings with the public, media, and other organizations
Promote programs that reach out to the community and to inactive members, to share good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and make known available opportunities to serve in God’s work at or from VPBC.
The Senior Pastor receives a compensation package, typically with negotiable allocation across a range of benefits in addition to base salary, with reference to policies set forth in the Personnel Policies & Employee Handbook (dated 2011). The package is in line with those of the Associate Pastors, and is developed with the advice of the Deacons and Personnel Committee, oversight by the Financial Administrator, and approval by the Finance Committee.
The Pastor’s schedule requires great flexibility in hours available for work, including evenings and weekends. The pastor should be in the office a sufficient amount of time for accessibility to members of the congregation and for regular communication with members of the staff. In addition to time dedicated to visitation, he also must allocate reasonable time for rest, relaxation and recreation to maintain a healthy balance in his life and in that of his family.
Village Parkway Baptist Church
3002 Village Parkway
San Antonio, TX 78251
PH: (210) 680-7813
Village Parkway Baptist Church is a missional church, seeking to communicate God’s message of love and forgiveness through relevant preaching and teaching. We hope you will join us in worship and connect with one of our small groups or Sunday School classes as we seek to make the message of Jesus Christ known to all the world.