Elder (Governing Elder, Ministering Elder, Elder-At-Large)

 

Currently our Governing Elders at East Hills includes:

Roman Chruszcz

Bill Conrad

Roland Gomez

Jeff Kurtz

Pastor John Stewart

Michael Van Hulla

 

Currently our Ministering Elders at East Hills includes:

Tony David

David McKnight

Greg Solomon

 

East Hills "Elder-At-Large" includes*:

Dave Dieckmeyer

Les Johnson

Ken Koozin

Steve Manchester

* (At East Hills, once an Elder always an Elder so "Elder-At-Large" refers to an Elder at the church who has previously served but is not currently serving in an active Governing or Ministering Elder position)

 

A Biblical Overview of an Elder (1 Timothy 3:1-7, Titus 1:3-9)

Elder, Overseer, Bishop, Pastor – All these words are used interchangeably throughout scripture.  The best description is “Overseer” or “Shepherd”.  The mere fact that someone has these qualities does not automatically make him a candidate for the Office of Elder.

1 Timothy states that if a man desires or has a heart for this position it is a good thing.  Such a man - with this desire and these qualifications - is already giving of himself to serve the body of Christ, before he is ever called an Elder!  Another indication of his readiness is that he already has an influence in peoples’ lives as a leader or shepherd.  Notice, the scripture talks of having a desire - indicating he does not strive for this position.  Elders are then appointed based on these observations.  (Acts 20:17-31, 1 Peter 5:1-5, Titus 1:5, Acts 14:21-23, Numbers 11:16-17).

Elders must lead in his own house first (1 Timothy 3:4).  He must shepherd and serve as an overseer of the flock, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock (1 Peter 5:2-4).  An Elder will establish and keep order in the church (Titus 1:5).  He must be able to teach and preach sound Biblical doctrine or truth from God’s Word (Titus 1:9).  He must sustain a spiritually healthy church (Titus 2:1-15).  Elders are to rule and rule well (Hebrews 13:7, Hebrews 13:17, 1 Timothy 5:17), give Godly counsel (Numbers 11:16-17), instruct (1 Timothy 4:6), and to structure and provide decisions for the church (Acts 15).  Scripture indicates he must be blameless, above reproach, a one woman man, and able to manage his household well.  He must be temperate, sober-minded, hospitable, gentle, not a drunkard, not violent or quarrelsome, not greedy, not covetous and not a new convert.  He must be qualified in the Word of God, able to teach the Word and give good Biblical counsel (1 Timothy 3: 1-7, Titus 1:3-9).

 

Practical Functions of the Governing Elder

Overseer of church members and staff, shepherd, financial oversight, serve communion, teach and give Godly counsel, set direction for the body, keep order, settle disputes, carries out church discipline, exhort, edify, encourage, lead, protect, direct and represent the body according to the Word.

 

Practical Functions of the Ministering Elder

Oversee and care for the church body, oversee and care for Care Ministers and their families, serve communion, teach and give Godly counsel, exhort, edify, encourage, lead, protect, direct and represent the body according to the Word.  Ministering Elders serve for a three year term and can serve is second consecutive term if feeling led to do so.

 

The Difference of Governing Elder and Ministering Elder

While there will be some overlap in purpose and function, the primary difference is that the Governing Elders oversee and shepherd the flock in the leading of the church (overseeing staff, making administrative decisions, handling church conflict, and guarding the teaching) while Ministering Elders oversee and shepherd the flock in relationships (direct follow-up and oversight of our congregation care).  Creating two types of Elders allows us to intentionally care for our body while also leading the church effectively.