Soon after Whitestone’s Lead Pastor Kurt Horst announced on January 6 his plans to retire on June 30, the elders discussed the process of appointing a Pastoral Search Committee of seven members. As a preliminary step, members of the congregation were invited to submit up to 5 names of members whom they would support if asked to serve. One hundred unduplicated names were submitted. Those with the highest number of votes moved to the top of the short list. The elders then individually named their own top choices, which again sharpened the focus on those who would be invited to serve. The invitation to each of the prospects consisted of a personal visit with the congregational chair, who also serves as chair of the Elder Team, and one other elder. In that process, only one person declined because of some schedule issues. So within about a one-week time frame, the committee members were confirmed and announced to the congregation. Some of the committee expressed not only interest, but eagerness, to serve in this important task. From the beginning of the process, the elders have gathered weekly for a time of prayer, acknowledging that God’s spirit has been evident from start to finish!