Senior Pastor Transition

Frequently Asked Questions

When will Pastor Roberts retire?

Pastor Roberts will retire as Senior Pastor with a target date of June 30, 2021.  


Why is Pastor Robert leaving?  Why now? 

After 33 years of faithful servant-leadership at Christ Chapel, Pastor Roberts and Sister Lynna believe that this is the right time...God’s time!  They will transition to the next season of their lives by rejoining their family in the Pacific Northwest.


Was Pastor Roberts’ decision voluntary, or was it directed by the Elder Board?

Pastor Roberts’ decision was prayerful and strictly voluntary, with absolutely no influence from the Elder Board.


Is there a succession plan in place for an orderly transition?

Yes.  The Christ Chapel Elder Board has implemented a smooth transition in the change of leadership that aligns with God’s plan and furthers our mission to “Reach, Teach, and Unleash.”

Pastor Roberts has committed to remaining active in the Senior Pastor role during the transition period and over his tenure has built a deep and capable bench of associate pastors and church/academy leaders to carry out the Great Commission of Matthew 28:19-20.  Pastor Roberts’ decision to leave at the end of June or once a successor has been named and in place, helps the Elder Board execute its succession plan. We’re confident that we have the right plan and the right leaders in place for an orderly transition.


Will the Senior Pastor search include both internal and external candidates? 

Yes.  The Elder Board believes that both Christ Chapel, and the Assemblies of God, have an exceptionally deep and talented pool of candidates; but also see it as our responsibility to evaluate external candidates to identify God’s calling and right fit for Christ Chapel.


I heard that someone has already been pre-selected to be our next Senior Pastor.  Is this true?

The Elder Board has not pre-selected any candidate to be the next Senior Pastor.  However, we know that God the Father is All-Knowing.  He knows who He has pre-destined to become our next Senior Pastor.  With complete trust in the Lord, we are extremely excited for the future of Christ Chapel and we’ll enter the new season with great joy, peace, and expectations.  Please join the Elder Board in prayer for unity and to be in tune to His guidance. Please pray for the leading of the Holy Spirit for wisdom, knowledge and guidance. 


What type of qualifications will be required for the new Senior Pastor?

The next Senior Pastor must meet the qualifications outlined in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9.  In addition to spiritual and pastoral qualifications outlined in our Constitution and By-Laws, the next Senior Pastor must demonstrate a firm grasp on the mission, vision, and core values of Christ Chapel. This will enable an alignment of their calling with the giftedness of our leadership and lay members, as well as our “Reach, Teach and Unleash” mission in the local and global communities.


What is the role of the Elder Board in this selection process?

In accordance with the Christ Chapel Constitution and By-Laws, the Elder Board has the responsibility of selecting the next Senior Pastor who meets the qualifications outlined in 1 Timothy 3:1-7, Titus 1:5-9, and as outlined in our Constitution and By-Laws.  The Constitution and By-Laws provide the selection process which consists of a nominating committee with an elected chairman and secretary. The committee has been formed and is charged with determining a list of the most qualified applicants for presentation to the Elder Board for their consideration. The Elder Board will review the Candidate Nomination Packages received from the Nominating Committee, conducts candidate interviews, and reach a Yea or Nay consensus on candidate recommendations.


What is Pastor Roberts’ role in the selection process?

The Constitution and By-Laws allow the Senior Pastor to recommend in conjunction with the Board, a successor. He participates in the selection of his successor.


What is our role as members of Christ Chapel?  Do we have a say in the selection of our next Pastor?

Members of Christ Chapel play a critical role in the seamless transition and succession process.  Upon recommendation of a specific candidate to the Elder Board, members of Christ Chapel will have an opportunity to vote on the adoption of the committee’s recommendation for Senior Pastor. The Elder Board will present the candidate to the Christ Chapel membership for a confirmation as the new Senior Pastor by a 75% “yea” ratification of the members present at a duly called Church Business Meeting. 

First and foremost, we encourage members to join the Elder Board and Deacons in prayer.  As a body, we must set aside our individual desire and preference; and collectively seek and trust God’s perfect will for Christ Chapel.  Because change can cause anxiety and bring challenges, your prayers will provide needed substantial covering for the unity of believers at Christ Chapel.


What happens if the Senior Pastor candidate does not receive a 75% ratification vote by the church members?

Should the candidate fail to receive the necessary 75% ratification vote, the moderator shall declare the nominee not elected, and shall refer the matter to the nominating committee for further choice.  The meeting then shall be adjourned without debate.  


It seems like the church is rushing the process.  Why is Christ Chapel not naming an interim Senior Pastor? 

Pastor Roberts communicated his decision to the Elder Board on Monday, January 25th, and will continue in his role until the end of June or when a successor is named and approved by the Elder Board.  As soon as receiving his intention to step down, the Elder Board formed a nominating search committee and began executing the Christ Chapel succession plan in accordance with our Christ Chapel Constitution and By-Laws. As Pastor Roberts will continue to actively lead Christ Chapel during this transition, an interim Senior Pastor is not required.


What happens if the Elder Board hasn’t concluded its Senior Pastor search by the end of June?

The board is confident in the selection process and the transition timeline. The board will screen a full range of potential candidates for this role. The nominating committee will be interviewing several high caliber candidates in the coming months and expects to narrow the list to the final candidates. The start date for the selected individual will be dependent on their required notice period, move to the Northern Virginia area, etc.  With very strong pastoral and leadership teams in place to execute our ministry and academy operations, we remain confident in God’s plan for an orderly transition.

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13909 Smoketown Road Woodbridge, VA 22192

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