Roswell Pres Blog

A Letter to the Congregation from Dr. Mark Brewer - Advantages of an Interim Pastor

Dearest Congregation
of Roswell Presbyterian,

I am so thrilled at the privilege of being your Interim Senior Pastor for the next chapter at Roswell Presbyterian. A lot of people often ask 'why have an Interim when we already have gifted staff who are currently leading?'

After leading four large congregations (and therefore leaving them, I heartily affirm the wisdom of our denomination's bias towards utilizing an Interim. The idea of a 'transitional shepherd' has been even more impressed upon me after spending the last three years training and helping pastors in many different denominations face congregational changes.

So what are the advantages of an Interim Pastor?

  1. Immediate help. Having someone who can come in and help strengthen and support the current leadership without becoming the next permanent leader relieves a lot of pressure. When a congregation experiences the loss of a beloved leader of many years, it takes some time to process, grieve, and celebrate the past. It gives a 'holy space' to prepare for your next pastor while doing the work of internal reflecting.
  2. Outside eyes. As the Lord raises up the next chapter of leaders at Roswell Presbyterian, it is an opportunity to continue on with tried and true leaders, but also to find new ones. The most important skill a good Interim has is 'listening'. Having 'relational ears' to hear the wants, fears, dreams, and concerns of a congregation is sometimes easier with a professional who is safe and not personally entangled with past history.
  3. Keeps the 'stock value' of Roswell Presbyterian high in seeking your next Senior Pastor. A healthy Interim keeps the worship service strong, the staff encouraged and 'aligned', the Session resourced and challenged, and the congregation called to 'dream God's dreams' for your future. This allows the best fit possible of attracting the most gifted pastoral candidates seeking their next congregation to love and lead. Keeping close to the Presbytery of Greater Atlanta and taking advantage of our denomination's great assets is also important.

I'll be sharing more as we begin a crucial time in the life of an historic and loving congregation.

Christ's peace and protection,
Dr. Mark Brewer
Interim Senior Pastor


Dr. Mark Brewer's first day with Roswell Presbyterian will be Tuesday, December 1. He will be preaching on Sunday, December 6 at all three services. There will be a welcome reception in the Fellowship Hall immediately following the 11:15 a.m. service. Light refreshments will be served.