I have great news for the entire Pleasant Hill Presbyterian Church family!
After interviewing many candidates and prayerfully considering the decision, the Interim Pastor Nominating Committee brought forward a recommendation to Session to call the Rev. Dr. Joel L. Alvis, Jr. as our Interim Head of Staff. Session unanimously and joyfully approved this recommendation on January 28. Joel has gladly accepted the position and will begin work on March 12, 2018.
As Interim Head of Staff, Joel will minister to us and help walk our church through the search and call process for our new permanent Pastor/Head of Staff. Joel will remain with PHPC until our new Pastor arrives.
I could try to describe who he is to you. But, it is better for Joel tell you for himself. Enclosed is the letter he has written to the PHPC community. This letter will be the first of many opportunities we will have to know Joel and witness the work of God through his ministry with us.
This is a great step in our transition to new leadership and a day for rejoicing.
Clerk of Session, Pleasant Hill Presbyterian Church
I am looking forward to sharing the next season of your life and ministry with you. Here are “The Facts” about my life and ministry:
I am a child of God blessed to be a husband, father, grandfather, teacher and pastor.
I am the husband of Vicki – we have shared a common life together since 1978 and are best friends. I am the father of Jody and Mark who have enriched my life in many ways. Mark is married to Emily and they are wonderful parents of Avery.
I am a teacher in the church and academy and have instructed classes and groups from confirmation to seminary. I am an author using words on the page to describe history and systems in the church, the Bible and the world.
I am a pastor who shepherds individuals and congregations through transitional moments in life.
These are the “facts.” But facts develop meaning in relationship. I look forward to developing a relationship with you over the next few months as we journey through this time of interim ministry together. There are two aspects of this work as Interim Pastor.
First, it will be temporary. The project is to work through this time to call your next Installed Pastor. As such I will consult and advise the leadership on assessing where you have been and addressing where you seek to go while identifying the ways to get there.
But that is not all, for I am also a “Pastor.” As a pastor, I will preach regularly, share the sacraments of baptism and communion, visit those who are sick or homebound, and with the Session exercise and develop the life of the congregation. This “Pastor” business is a privilege that I do not take lightly. I look forward to getting to learn more about you as we jointly begin this journey through the interim time.
Thank you for the privilege to join in this season of your life and ministry. I look forward to beginning with you the week of March 12.
Peace. Grace. Hope. In Christ,
The Rev. Joel L. Alvis, Jr.