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Pastor Search

In the spring of 2021, our Senior Pastor for Redeemer East Side, Dr. Abraham Cho, stepped down after six years of faithful service to the Congregation. We are grateful for the ways God used him to lead this community. He has followed God’s call to serve as the Senior Director of training for Redeemer City to City in NYC and North America.

Change, while inevitable and even good, can also be disorienting. We’re here to keep you informed and encouraged as we search for a new senior pastor. Keep reading to learn about the process and how you can get involved!

Pastoral Search Committee

Meet The Pastoral Search Committee (PSC). We were nominated and approved by Redeemer East Side members and include a broad representation of our congregation across age, race, marital and vocational status. We are honored to serve Redeemer East Side through this process. Feedback, questions, or comments? We’d love to hear from you at [email protected].

Church and Pastor Profile

One of our first steps in this process was to create our Church and Pastor Profile. This document describes the past, present, and aspirational goals of our congregation. We received input through our Congregational Survey, Focus Groups, and interviews by the McGowan Global Institute. Then, the cumulative data was used by the Pastoral Search Committee, McGowan Global Institute, and the Redeemer East Side staff to create the profile. It helps both the Pastoral Search Committee and prospective pastors mutually assess fit. What’s included? Click the button below and take a look.



Do you know someone who would make a great pastor at Redeemer East Side? We’d love for you to nominate him! All you have to do is submit him name to the Pastoral Search Committee for review. They will do the nitty-gritty follow-up work. These nominations are confidential and will be added to the pool of candidates. Candidates are reviewed by the Pastoral Search Committee and the McGowan Global Institute.



Join us every Sunday from 11 to 11:20 am (between the two morning services) for a time of prayer over the pastor search process and the work God is doing in and through our congregation. We meet in Room A of the Ballroom at Temple Israel (112 E 75th Street).



Phase 1: Organization

Nominating Committee selects the Pastoral Search Committee (PSC) and Chairman

Nominating Committee selects McGowan Global Institute (MGI) as a consultant to help guide the Pastor Search process.

Redeemer East Side (RES) Members vote to approve PSC members at congregational meeting on June 13, 2021.

MGI hosts Discovery Weekend Focus Groups for RES Congregation.

PSC forms subcommittees and positions listed below to mange and implement the search process:

  • Church Survey Committee
  • Focus Group Committee
  • Church/Pastor Profile Committee
  • Prayer Committee
  • Website Committee
  • Candidate Management Committee
  • Sermon Listening Committee
  • Document Development Committee
  • Communication Coordinator
  • Secretary

PSC prays together weekly and prepares for candidate selection by reading Preaching by Tim Keller and discussing the book together.

PSC has internal training with MGI.

Survey Subcommittee designs, sends out and analyzes survey to RES congregation on Church Vision and Pastor Qualities.

Prayer Subcommittee creates a prayer guide for the RES congregation throughout the preparation process.

Website Subcommittee sets up a PSC webpage within the RES website.

Focus Group Subcommittee prepares for and conducts Vision and Brainstorming sessions with RES congregation in small groups, including time for Q&A.

Church and Pastor Profile Committee develops preliminary Church and Pastor Profile based on congregational input from survey and focus group results.

Training is provided for the PSC on sermon review through Redeemer City to City professionals.

Phase 2: Collection

PSC publishes the Church and Pastor Profile and solicits candidates with the support of the congregation, and pastor and MGI recommendations.

Candidate files are created in a confidential Google drive for the PSC.

Phase 3: Evaluation

Candidate Management Subcommittee implements a candidate evaluation process and manages remote interviews for the PSC members.

  • PSC interviews candidate selections, reviews sermons, gifting profiles, references; and conducts remote interviews for candidates.
  • PSC narrows down to no more than three finalists.

Members of the PSC visit each finalist within their current local church, to listen to them preach, evaluate the ethos of their worship service, and interview the candidate, spouse and family (if applicable).

Phase 4: Selection

Background and reference checks are conducted on the final candidate.

PSC votes internally to select the final candidate.

Personnel Subcommittee finalizes the arrangements for a public visit. The finalist makes a weekend visit to interview/meet with RES staff and lay leaders, deliver the sermon and be introduced to the RES congregation.

The candidate is introduced to the RES Session.

PSC conducts a follow up with RES congregation for feedback on the finalist.

Travel plans to visit candidates and to have candidates visit RES may be modified due to Covid-19 pandemic and MGI’s recommendations.

Phase 5: Completion

PSC distributes final report and recommendation to the RES congregation.

RES Members vote to call the Recommended Candidate at a Congregational Meeting.

Presbytery confirms the Called Candidate.

Presbytery installs the Called Candidate as the new Senior Pastor of RES.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the PCA guidelines for the election of pastors?

These guidelines are available in the Book of Church Order. You can read them by clicking here.

How long will this take?

The timeline depends on a variety of factors that make the answer to this question difficult to answer. However, we can assure you that we are working diligently to move the process forward and trust that God will bring us the right candidate in His perfect timing.

When did you start looking?

The first steps of the search process began in the spring of 2021 when we learned that Dr. Abraham Cho would be stepping down as senior pastor.

What if I want to nominate someone from a different denomination?

We are grateful for your interest, but candidates must be ordained in the Presbyterian Church of America.

Can I join the prayer meeting virtually?

We are not currently offering a virtual option for the prayer meeting. You are, of course, welcome to join us in spirit by praying individually at 8:45 a.m. on the last Sunday of the month.

How often can we expect updates?

Members of the PSC update the congregation quarterly. However, if you have questions, feel free to reach out to us at [email protected]

Why are we working with MGI?

MGI has years of experience helping churches thrive. Aiding in pastoral search is one of the many consultation services they offer. As you can imagine, searching for a new senior pastor for a church like Redeemer can be challenging. We are grateful to have the help of an organization that has helped many churches navigate this process.