ElderCohort-SmallVersDuring the 2016 Partnership, our Elders received recommendations from the Partnership for future Elder candidates. After reviewing the recommendations, prayerfully considering the qualifications of the men recommended, and seeking Jesus’ guidance as the Head of our church, our Elders invited a few of those recommended to be part of our 2016-2017 Elder Apprentice Cohort.

The 2016-2017 Cohort includes (pictured from L to R) Hunter DeJarnette, Richard Smart, Lance Byrd, and Daniel Bunn. Some Elder Apprentices will be brought before the church as Elder candidates before they complete the Cohort, others will be brought before the church as candidates after they complete the Cohort, and it is also possible some may not be brought before the church at all for various reasons.

Please be in prayer for the Cohort and their wives over the next year as we together discern God’s leading in their life and in the church.

Cohort Objectives

The Elder Apprentice Cohort as four objectives:

  1. To theologically train Elder apprentices so that they are prepared for and capable of pastoral ministries of the Word including preaching, defending the faith, pastoral care, church discipline, and spiritual direction within Metanoia Church.
  2. To facilitate the personal spiritual development of apprentices so that they deepen their relationship with Christ and are living examples to the church of modern day disciples.
  3. To familiarize apprentices with Metanoia’s statement of faith (Baptist Faith and Message, 2000) and philosophy of ministry along with historic Baptist confessions of faith so that they are confident in articulating, teaching, and defending our church’s and our denomination’s distinctives.
  4. To provide a structure through which an apprentice together with the current Elders will prayerfully determine if he should be brought before the church as an Elder candidate.

Cohort Semesters (approx 15 months long)

Cohort class sessions are 2 hours in length and are held once every 2 weeks. There is a 1 month break between semesters. There will be 1 or 2 gatherings of the wives of Elder apprentices each semester to help prepare them for their husband’s ministry and for their own unique ministries in the church.

Elder apprentices commit to completing all 4 semesters at the outset. Apprentices may opt out of the apprenticeship at the conclusion of the first, second, or third semesters. Reasons to opt out may include unforeseen difficult or otherwise stressful life circumstances such as personal or family chronic illness, birth of a child, death of a loved one, etc..

Semester 1: The Word of God and the Elder as a Man of God (6 sessions)

This semester focuses on the doctrine of Scripture, the office of Elder, and personal spiritual growth.

Semester 2: God and Humanity (8 sessions)

This semester focuses on doctrines of God and humanity. Special emphasis is placed on doctrines of Christ, Holy Spirit, and sin as well as a complimentary understanding of our gendered creation.

Semester 3: Salvation, Sanctification, Spiritual Gifts, and Pastoral Care (6 sessions)

This semester focuses on Christian living and ministry. Specifically: salvation, sanctification, and exercising spiritual gifts. Additional emphasis is placed on understanding the relationship between the Law and the Gospel of Jesus Christ and on the unique role of spiritual direction in pastoral care.

Semester 4: The Church and Preaching (6 sessions)

The first half of this semester focuses on ecclesiology (the doctrine of “church”) as well as Metanoia Church’s polity. The second half of this semester focuses on sermon preparation and preaching.

Cohort Readings

Here is a list of some of the readings the Cohort will go through in the event that you are interested in reading and studying some of what the Elder Apprentices will be studying.