Denominational Leaders – Frequently Asked Questions
What is IPM’s history and what type of denominations do you typically serve?
- IPM originated in 1990 as a result of informal discussions by six District Superintendents of the Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA).
- IPM was formed as an independent 501(c)(3). While the EFCA provides IPM with 25% of our churches we serve, we also serve 20+ biblically-conservative evangelical denominations and fellowships – as well as conservative independent evangelical churches.
How will partnering with IPM save me time? What will it cost my budget?
- You’ll be able to continue focusing on important district and denominational initiatives while essentially outsourcing the specialized pastoral transition details to IPM. You will be involved at the level you desire, but you will be free of the day-to-day details of the transitional season.
- There is no cost to your budget for IPM services.
When in the pastoral transition process should I refer a church to IPM?
- It is best to contact us as soon as you are aware a transition is likely – preferably even before the present pastor officially departs.
What is the process for matching an IPM Interim with a given church? Will he be from my denomination? Can I request a specific IPM member with whom I have a relationship and already know?
- Specific needs, church size, regional and cultural knowledge/familiarity and denominational affiliation all factor into the identification of available IPM pastors for a given placement.
- We will make every effort to provide someone from your denomination, and if not, an Interim who will closely align with your Statement of Faith and support and bolster the existing relationship between you and the church.
- You may request an existing IPM member with whom you are familiar and/or already have a working relationship. If he is available and has a desire to serve the given church, we will certainly seek to fulfill your request.
What are the financial arrangements when a church partners with IPM – and is a contract required?
- A contract is executed directly between the church and IPM. The church pays a fixed, contracted amount to IPM each month and we, in turn, handle the payroll and associated issues directly with our member. He is a W-2 employee of IPM while he is placed in the church.
- You should expect IPM, as a partner in ministry, to be sensitive and responsive to you, the church leadership and denominational polity.
- An IPM Interim Pastor will largely perform all the expected duties of a church’s senior pastor. When serving intentionally, he’ll lead a process to connect with people, assess church health, facilitate action items, assist in forward planning -- and with your consent and approval, help coach the pastoral search.
- Our Interim Pastors are trained to contact you soon after arrival to gain your insight, clarify issues and establish an ongoing line of communication. The IPM Interim Pastor is ultimately accountable to IPM as his employer.
Can an IPM Interim Pastor be a candidate for the permanent position?
- No; IPM policies prohibit a member from being a candidate while he is serving the church as Interim Pastor OR at any time in the future should the position become vacant again.
How long is the typical IPM placement?
- Placements generally run between 12 – 18 months but can be as short as 9 or as long as 24 depending upon the situation, need and constraints of the pastoral search.
What vetting and requirements are applied to new IPM members? What about Coaching and Continuing Education?
- IPM has stringent membership requirements. Each applicant is thoroughly vetted relative to our standards. At a minimum, an IPM member must meet age, experience and education requirements, pass a criminal background check and undergo a rigorous application process.
- We have an entire IPM division dedicated to ongoing refinement of our training curriculum, fostering effective Interim coaching, holding annual continuing education events and making new resources available to prepare and sharpen our members.
Where can I access IPM’s Statement of Faith?
- Our Founding Statement of Faith is available on our website – interimpastors.com – see “About Us – Beliefs”.
- We also allow members to join IPM by affirming the doctrinal statement of the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), also displayed on our website.
What else should I know about IPM that would encourage me to refer one of my churches to you?
- District Leaders have likened partnering with IPM to having additional unpaid pastoral transition specialists working on your behalf.
- IPM’s presence will free you up to concentrate on important missional, church health and outward focused initiatives of both your district and denomination.
How can I learn more, obtain references and/or have a more in-depth conversation about these topics and how IPM might align with the needs of my district?
- Please contact the appropriate IPM representative below:
Dr. David Jenkins: National Director of Pastor and Regional Relationships
Dr. Rich Brown: Western Director of Pastor and Regional Relationships
Don Price: Southeastern Area Rep of Pastor and Regional Relationships