The Search Process

Welcome to Search and Call for the Penn Central Conference

Any questions about the Search and Call Process, please contact the Conference Office at 717.652.1560.

Congregations – When your pastor has announced that he/she is leaving, please contact the Conference Office for guidance through the transitional process.

UCC Ministers – To enter the Search and Call Process in the Penn Central Conference, you will need to complete a UCC Profile through the national office in Cleveland and have it directed to the Conference. At that time we will share with you the Local Church Profiles of the congregations that are seeking. It is our policy to send UCC Ministerial Profiles to all congregations you request at the appropriate time. Churches that currently have Local Church Profiles are listed on our “Churches Seeking” page.

Non-UCC Ministers – We only distribute official UCC Profiles to our congregations. If you are seeking ministry in the United Church of Christ, you must first get authorization from the UCC Association in which you are residing.

Overview of the Search & Call Process

  1. A pastor announces his/her resignation. It is recommended that this is done 90 days prior to the departure date.
  2. A contact is made to the Conference Office.
  3. The Associate Conference Minister meets with the Consistory/Council to talk through the process and provide resources.
  4. An Interim Minister is chosen to lead the church through the transitional time.
  5. A Profile Writing Committee is chosen to gather information and complete the Local Church Profile.
  6. The position is advertised through UCC Employment Opportunties.
  7. A Search Committee is chosen who reads ministerial profiles, conducts telephone interviews, reference checks, face-to-face interviews, etc. The Committee recommends the final candidate to the Consistory/Council.
  8. The Consistory/Council approves the final Penn Central Conference Call Form (negotiated with the Candidate) which includes compensation; sends the information to the Conference Office; and sets the date for the candidating weekend/official congregational meeting in conjunction with the Association Committee on Ministry.
  9. During the candidating weekend, the candidate is introduced to groups in the church; leads worship on Sunday morning; and is elected as the pastor.
  10. The pastor begins. Installation is typically occurs 2-3 months after the beginning date. The installation date is set in conversation with the Association.