One step in the discernment process is a Pastoral Assessment Interview with a trained Vineyard Church Planting Assessor. This is a behavioral interview where you will talk through your specific behaviors in skills like disciple making, people gathering, healthy communication, and more.
We’ve found that past behavior is one of the best indicators of future performance. So, instead of just talking through your vision, together you will review real life examples of how you use applicable church planting skills. This extended interview often takes place over a meal or can happen online.
The purpose of this interview is confirm with you God’s invitation on your life and offer suggestions for continued development from a seasoned leader.
Below you will find some examples of questions your assessor might walk you through. These questions all fall into categories that are characteristics of a successful church planter.
Exercises a sense of call
- How did your call to church planting come to you?
- What are your non-negotiable convictions in ministry?
- Describe and instance where you resisted compromising your convictions?
Possessing a faith-drive vision
- What kind of church do you envision? How does this style compare and differ with your previous ministry?
- How have you structured your leadership training time in the past? What skills have you taught your leadership?
- How have you shared your vision and asked people to join your previous group?
- When was the last time you followed-up on a new believer? What tools did you use to follow up?
- Give an example of the type of small groups you have led? How did you release ministry to others and supervise them in these groups?
- How will you assimilate newcomers and seekers into a relationship with you and then move them into other small groups?
- What ministries have you started from scratch in the past year?
- Where did you gather the people from those groups?
- How will you network and build new relationships in your target group?
Healthy communication skills
- What training have you had in preaching?
- What topics do you intend to preach in your first year?
- What do your critics say are the areas you need most to improve in for better communication?
Creative evangelistic skills
- When was the last time you led someone to the Lord?
- Describe the tools you use to train others in how to share the gospel.
- Make a list of the ways you have typically reached out to unchurched people? Which have been the most fruitful?
Intentional planning skills
- Have you written your two-year ministry plan yet? Where would you like help?
- Have you set your goals for the first two years of this church? If so, share some of your key goals with us. Define the kind of team you are recruiting for this project.
- Based on your needs, personality, and gifts, what kinds of leaders do you need to place around you to be more effective?
Financial management skills
- Has personal indebtedness ever been a problem? If so, please comment.
- What arrangements are you considering in order to support yourself to accomplish your vision?
- How much money will you need to raise to launch your ministry? What are your budget plans for salary, ministry expenses, health care and retirement, as you go into this financial adventure?
A solid marriage and family
- How do you and your spouse use your gifts and talents to complement each other?
- Have you found a compatible way to spiritually grow together as a couple?
- What relational conflicts have you experienced as a couple in ministry?
- How much marital stress currently exists in your marriage?
- What is the most fundamental and greatest source of pain you have experienced in life to date?
- How have you confronted and corrected someone who did not follow through on his or her assignment?
- Have you ever had your integrity challenged? If so, please explain.
A vital spiritual life
- In your calendar on a given month, how much time do you set aside for thinking, planning and praying?
- What were your spiritual formation goals last year?
- What fills your tank spiritually and brings you closer to God?