Pastor Search Update

Freshwater Staff   -  

It was September 19, 2021 when our previous lead pastor announced he was being called away from Freshwater and then, on November 14, 2021, we said farewell. We have been without a lead pastor for more than two and a half years, but in that time, we have still followed our Good Shepherd.

Because the church is built on Christ and not any man.

God has been so faithful to Freshwater over these two-plus years, but it’s been a long time! And yet, we know God’s timing is perfect. We don’t know all the reasons God caused us to wait, but we trust His timing, His plan and His goodness completely.

That’s why, with indescribable gratitude for God’s faithfulness and great excitement for the future, the elders announced on Sunday, June 2 that the next lead pastor of Freshwater Community Church will be Pastor Jake Poole!

More than two years ago, as the elders began developing the job posting and updating a job description for a lead pastor, they asked all three of our current pastors if they were feeling led to the lead pastor position. All three said no at that time.

We encourage you to watch the video of our service from June 2 to hear all about how God moved since that initial response, both with the members of the elder board and with Pastor Jake!

Watch the Message
Important Details

While we are thrilled for the season ahead, we will be working through a time of transition this summer and into the fall. Here are some common questions you may have about what’s next, along with answers from the elder board.

When will Jake officially begin his new role?
The official start date for Jake to assume the position of lead pastor will be Monday, August 5, 2024. We will be working with the district office on a more formal installation service later this year, after the official start date. During the intervening time, we will be working with Jake on a transition plan that will include finalizing a job description tailored around Jake’s specific gifting, identifying the next leadership strategy for our worship team, reestablishing roles and responsibilities within the current staff as needed, and anything else that hasn’t been thought of yet. It is going to be a busy summer!

What changes do you anticipate making to the lead pastor job description?
We want to work in flexibility and space for Jake to operate in his gifting while not overburdening him. To be clear, Jake may not preach as much as we are used to for a lead pastor and he may continue to lead worship periodically. However, he will not have both positions of lead pastor and worship leader. To protect his time and overall health, the elders’ desire is that only in rare circumstances will he both lead worship and preach on a Sunday morning. We want to provide flexibility with guardrails for his sake and for the sake of his family.

What does that mean for our worship team?
In the short term, we will likely fill Jake’s role leading worship with an interim lead that may not be a pastor. We don’t feel like God is taking a pastoral position away, but we aren’t sure what that is right now and we are really excited to dream about that with Jake in this lead position. We ask that you provide grace and space to allow us and him to figure that out. Just embrace the mess of learning as we go on some of it.

What does it mean for the rest of the staff?
We are going to figure out as much as we can before August 5, but the rest might just be a surprise! That goes for the staff roles and responsibilities as well. Pastor Sean and Pastor Len knew about this change several weeks before the announcement and the rest of the staff only a few days. So again, please give grace and space for us and the staff to figure things out and readjust back to having someone in the lead position.

Worship Songs from June 2
  • “House of the Lord”
  • “Great is Thy Faithfulness”
  • “King of Kings” (after the announcement)
  • “All Hail King Jesus” (after the announcement)
  • “Gratitude” (after the announcement)