Emmanuel Lutheran Church

Longview, Washington, United States

Lead Pastor

  • Address: 2218 E Kessler Blvd, Longview, Washington 98632
  • Affiliation: LCMC
  • Contact: Carol Ernst
  • Phone: 360.423.3250
  • Email: cernst@call-committee-elc-2022.net
  • Website: Click Here
  • Category: Pastoral Ministry
  • Sub-Category: Senior Pastor
  • Position Title: Lead Pastor
  • Position Type: Full Time
  • Description:

    Congregational Profile – Emmanuel Lutheran Church, Longview WA

    Emmanuel Lutheran Church (LCMC)

    2218 E Kessler Blvd

    Longview, WA 98632




    Congregational Council Chair: Mark Thorsen; 360.423.3250, office2218@elclongview.com

    Call Committee Co-Chair: Carol Ernst, Brian Hamilton (cernst@call-committee-elc-2022.net ; brian@call-committee-elc-2022.net )



    Our story began in 1941 when a small contingent of a Lutheran congregation in Longview, WA was looking for something different.  That Holy Spirit inspired group formed what is now Emmanuel Lutheran.  In 1948, after building supplies had become available again, construction on the sanctuary began, and later that year worship was taking place in the new building.  An education building was constructed in 1957 due to the need to handle the rapid growth of the Church and the associated programs. 

    The congregation experienced tremendous growth over the ensuing decades.  Our population peaked in the 1980’s and has seen decline in the past couple of decades.  Currently over 100 parishioners gather weekly for worship, with several more participating via online platforms.  Our buildings are in good condition, thanks in large part to a dedicated team of skilled volunteers.  We have also been diligent in how our capital funds are allocated in order to upgrade our mechanical systems.  We still have some upgrades to complete to keep our facilities in top shape, and over the next year we should have most of those items addressed.

    Over the years there have been ups and downs in the congregation.  The most contentious of those trials was the decision of this congregation to leave the ELCA and join the LCMC.  This moment in time altered the trajectory of the faithful members of this family in a profound way.  But even through all of life’s challenges, this congregation has remained deeply rooted in the Word, and has let the Spirit lead us forward with a positive outlook and attitude.  You would be hard pressed to find negative attitudes about the past.  We have been in a period of transition for the past year.  Our long-term Lead Pastor resigned to take a call closer to his hometown.  We determined the best course of action was to retain an Intentional Interim Pastor to bring us through this transition and prepare us to call a settled Lead Pastor. 

    Our time of reflection and focus has allowed the Spirit to lead us to the determination that our next Lead Pastor will have the following characteristics: a Preacher who is well rooted in the Word and prayer, someone who is a dynamic communicator, someone who is authentic and flexible, seasoned with a sense of humor, and an innovative and creative leader who listens to the needs of both the congregation and community.. 

    We are not a young congregation–most are over 50 years old and have been a part of the Emmanuel family for over 20 years.  A recent survey of the congregation revealed that most joined the church because of the involvement of another family member or friend.  Those here already identified that our top strength is our friendliness–we are a very welcoming bunch. And we are currently engaging at being more strategic and intentional at our inviting, welcoming, and follow-up with those who visit.   More than half of us are involved in one or more of our various ministries. 

    We worship together at one service weekly, 9:30am, currently averaging more than 100 each week, and growing slowly.  It is a blended service type, leaning more heavily toward traditional liturgical elements.  We commune at each service.  On the face of it, our musical preferences lean more toward traditional hymns, blended with occasional use of contemporary songs and guitars/keyboard. We have a demonstrated willingness to  try new things.  On Sunday mornings, Emmanuel has a time of fellowship and refreshment following worship, as well as a well-attended adult Bible Study led by our Pastor that meets weekly after the morning service, a children’s  Sunday school, and a Confirmation class.  Our staff positions consist of an Office Administrator and Music Director.

    This is a congregation with many generous donors and positive stewardship practices  who have entrusted our Congregational Council to manage their gifts.  We have a fairly robust endowment fund that provides interest-earned funds for specific projects and capital investment in the facilities.  We tithe from our annual giving to outside-our-walls ministries managed by our Mission Board.  We are in a debt free financial position.  Our budget, other financial information, and Annual Reports will be made available for review and discussion to the finalists in our search process. 

    Our dedicated membership happily serves in the following ministries that have a profound impact in the local community:

    FISH (Friends in Service to Humanity)...a local food program

    Family Promise…providing family transitional housing solutions

    Victoria Freeman Park Project…food distribution to the homeless

    WOW Quilters (Women on Wednesday)...producing annually about 100 quilts for international and local distribution


    Additionally, we have other teams that faithfully serve our congregation.  These include our Ushers, Deacons, Altar Guild, Maintenance Team, Fellowship Team, Choir, Bell Choir, and a variety of Musicians.


    Our church has a lot to offer, as does the Longview/Kelso area.  Longview/Kelso is the long established center of wood products manufacturing in Southwest Washington.  The Longview/Kelso area boasts many historical locations, a vibrant downtown community, restaurants, tap houses, wineries, parks and greenspaces, as well as a bustling waterfront on the Columbia River.  Here in Cowlitz County, you are close to both the Coast Mountain and Cascade Mountain ranges, with renowned peaks like Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helen, and Mt. Hood. There are countless recreational possibilities (hiking, biking, skiing, snowshoeing, boating, ATV/UTV, hunting, fishing, golf, etc.) in the local community and surrounding area.  You are a short drive to the Pacific Ocean, the beach and the mouth of the mighty Columbia River.  The big cities of Portland and Seattle are within driving distance as is Portland International Airport.  Numerous community events happen throughout the year, including theater, concerts, parades, sports tournaments and local festivals. We have numerous public and Christian elementary and middle schools with a long and strong reputation.  These schools feed the three public high schools and one Christian high school in the community.  Additionally, Lower Columbia Community College is based here.  There are recreational sports programs and leagues for youth of all ages.  The Longview/Kelso area is close to anything you would need, but far enough removed to not get swept up in the hustle of the big city.  The climate here is very moderate; we don’t experience extreme weather patterns, and the summers are awesome.

    We are trusting in and allowing the Spirit to guide us through this call process.  We trust that the Spirit will also nudge the right candidate to be open to new possibilities, contact us, and join us at Emmanuel Lutheran in God’s beautiful Pacific Northwest!


    Emmanuel Lutheran Church

    Title: Lead Pastor                                                             approved by Council December 2022

    Desired Qualifications (education/experience):

    This pastor shall have a Master of Divinity degree from an accredited Lutheran seminary and be rostered (or able to be rostered) with the Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ (LCMC) Clergy List before accepting this call.


    Knowledge, Skills and Abilities Required:

    It is expected that this person has the general personal characteristics, skills, and abilities of an ordained pastor. These characteristics, skills and abilities should include:

    • Submission to the direction of the Holy Spirit
    • Ability to relate to others in a team situation
    • Passion and effectiveness in the areas of worship, education, outreach, community engagement, administration, and stewardship
    • Good rapport with people of multiple generations and economic strata


    Basic Function and Responsibility:

    The primary function of the Lead pastor of Emmanuel Lutheran Church is to teach and preach the way of salvation through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In serving as Lead Pastor at Emmanuel, this person shall work collaboratively with the leadership and staff at Emmanuel in support and implementation of the mission and vision of Emmanuel.


    Characteristic Duties and Responsibilities:

    This person shall

    1. Regularly pray for the congregation and its ministry
    2. Support local and global ministries for all ages in cooperation in cooperation with the appropriate boards, teams, and committees by:
      1. encouraging and aiding in the development of spiritual growth in the lives of all people whether they are seekers, believers, disciples and/or leaders
      2. exploring ways to bring people into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and help them find avenues to strengthen and deepen their faith
      3. developing collegial relationships with other Christian congregations seeking to develop impactful and needed community ministries
      4. increasing the fellowship opportunities for adults and families to enrich the congregational life at Emmanuel Lutheran Church
    3. Provide hospital visitation as necessary in coordination with the Deacons
    4. Provide spiritual leadership and support for the Mission Board
    5. Participate and coordinate learning ministries by:
      1. developing spiritual events
      2. providing for the teaching of Sunday school classes for children, youth, and adults
      3. leading adult Bible studies
      4. coordinating and/or teaching of confirmation and new member classes
      5. ensuring and encouraging small group ministries
    6. Teach and promote biblical stewardship for congregants in areas of giving, the use of spiritual gifts, community and global causes and concerns
    7. Conduct visitation of membership with a focus on:
      1. home visitation with shut-in members as requested
      2. prospect visitation and contact /nurture of visitors
      3. coordinating and support the ongoing visitation and contact with the congregation by the Deacons
    8. Lead congregational worship by:
      1. a positive and engaging public presence through various skills in worship and in the areas of preaching, worship leadership and hospitality
      2. plan weekly worship, coordinating music with the staff in those positions
      3. regularly preaching, serving as communion liturgist, providing a children’s message when needed, coordinating lay participation in worship leadership
      4. providing special services for Advent, Christmas, Lent, Holy Week, and Thanksgiving with lay participation as needed
      5. exploring and developing future additional worship opportunities for adults, youth and homebound
      6. working with any related Boards, Teams, or Committees
    9. Provide spiritual leadership and support for Youth and Children Ministries and support and encourage any related staff and/or teams.
    10. Perform Weddings (including premarital counseling), Baptisms, and Funerals as requested
    11. Encourage participation in a variety of local missions in our communities
    12. Support ministries and events in collaboration with the appropriate teams and committees
    13. Provide emergency counseling and help find outside resources for long-term counseling if necessary
    14. Facilitate and participate in regular staff meetings
    15. Provide electronic and hard copy correspondence, monthly newsletter articles, and monthly council reports as necessary
    16. Attend council and congregational meetings
    17. Attend committee and team meetings as necessary
    18. Perform other duties as assigned by the Congregation Council


    Reporting Relationship: To Congregation Council


    Supervisory Relationship: Office Administrator, Music Director, Children and Youth Ministry Director, Nursery Care Director, Bookkeeper


    Organizational Outline: Emmanuel Lutheran Church congregation in meeting; Congregation Council in meeting; Lead Pastor; Program and Support Staff; Boards, Committees, and Ministry Teams


    Desired Personal Characteristics:

    1. Strong Christian walk demonstrated by regular prayer, worship, devotional practices, Bible study, and fellowship
    2. Positive, flexible, and adaptable personality, attitude, and presence
    3. Demonstrably excellent written and verbal communication skills
    4. Proven computer and technology skills
    5. Desire to grow and learn by seeking out and applying new ideas
    6. Willingness to participate in ongoing training for the ministry
    7. Desire to work as a team member and leader among leaders to further the mission of Emmanuel