Working on a search committee

Date: November 28, 2023

Yesterday, I had two search committee meeting interviews for the Ethics professor; and on Thursday, there will be another one. Search committees are hard work. All searches are tricky: one is very aware that you are asking another human being to make your institution their vocation and to work within this particular community. One is also aware that each person has thought long and hard about their application. They are prayerfully offering themselves to God. In Ethics, there are relatively few openings; so, you also know that this (sometimes) recently minted doctorate is hoping that an opening will arise in the academy where their hard work can be used for the kingdom.

Seniors are starting a similar process. They are being considered by the search committees in congregations. It is important that one is empathetic all the way round. Have some sympathy for the search committee who is interviewing many people and working hard to appreciate the achievements of those who are being interviewed; and have some sympathy for those who are being interviewed who have already checked out the “local schools” for their children just in case this is where they end up.

In all this, we should pray. We should ask for the presence of Almighty God in these processes. The future of human lives will be determined by these processes.

The Very Rev. Ian S. Markham, Ph.D.
The Dean and President of Virginia Theological Seminary and the President of The General Theological Seminary

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