Welcome

Thank you for your interest in St. John’s Baptist Church and our search for our next Minister or Ministers of Youth and Young Adults. We are seeking candidates called to lead youth and/or young adults in a setting that is committed to the principles of inclusion and openness to all who seek to be a Child of God. We are looking to fill one or more positions within our ministerial staff to lead our Youth and Young Adult programs. If you or someone you know would be interested in applying, we invite you to learn more about the position, our church and its ministries below and throughout this site. Those interested in applying or who may have questions should contact our search committee at SearchTeam@sjcharlotte.org. If you would like to be considered for the position, please provide the following to the foregoing email address:

  • A cover letter;
  • A resume reflecting your educational and professional experience; and
  • A video response not to exceed three (3) minutes responding to one of the two following prompts:**
    1. Describe a time when you felt God guiding you to ministry with youth and/or young adults; or
    2. What should Church mean to young people in the world today?

**In the event video files exceed attachment limits, please provide a link to your video response on any video posting website you prefer (e.g. YouTube, Vimeo, etc.).

Upon receipt of the items above, we will acknowledge receipt of your application and keep you apprised as we review and begin scheduling interviews.

The Position

Our search committee, in consultation with the congregation and the ministerial staff, have identified the following responsibilities, objectives, attributes, and qualifications that we are seeking to achieve in our hiring process. These may be accomplished in one or more hires.

  • Leadership
    • Guide Youth and Young Adult ministries by coordinating and providing Christian education, pastoral care, family support, and friendship. Facilitate opportunities for spiritual formation and community engagement.
    • Promote the spirit of St. John’s and guide St. John’s toward pursuing the congregation’s vision for engaging Youth and Young Adults by being a visible representative in the community and with our missions and service partners.
    • Oversee all administrative details related to Youth and Young Adults in our congregation and the surrounding community. Administrative details include, but are not limited to, preparing budgets and identifying and fulfilling resource, space and equipment needs.
    • Recruit, equip, support, and develop leaders (i) within the youth group, (ii) among the volunteers who work with Youth, and (iii) among Young Adults.
    • Energize the people of St. John’s to increase their support for, participation in, and engagement with St. John’s Youth and Young Adult members.
  • Spirituality and Theological Formation:
    • Be called to Christian ministry as a profession and demonstrate a desire for lifelong learning in the areas of spirituality, worship, congregational life and leadership.
    • Serve as an example to Youth and Young Adults through discipleship which models a pursuit of spiritual formation and theological literacy.
    • Communicate and model St. John’s approach to ecumenical practices in the context of inclusive Baptist principles.
    • Foster a welcoming, affirming environment among Youth and Young Adults that allows opportunity for questioning and spiritual growth.
  • Personal and Relational Professionalism:
    • Express an inclusive and hospitable spirit toward all persons in ways that are representative of the values and vision of St. John’s.
    • Exhibit superior interpersonal skills and confidence in public speaking, especially by conveying a sense of enthusiasm for St. John’s.
    • Foster community between Youth, Young Adults and members of all ages to promote and support the inter-generational spirit of the church.
    • Commit to St. John’s by becoming an active participant in the life of St. John’s.
    • Commit to the local community and surrounding neighborhood by being an active participant in events and initiatives in Charlotte.
    • Embrace opportunities to provide services and support to members of all ages at St. John’s while working collaboratively with existing ministerial staff to meet congregational needs.
    • Exhibit creativity, flexibility and strong problem solving skills.
    • Demonstrate a commitment to personal development and pursuit of continuing education opportunities.
  • Youth and Young Adult Ministries
    • Youth Ministry
      • Continue and strengthen traditional elements of St. John’s Youth programming (e.g. Sunday School, Sunday evening youth programming, Youth Sunday, weekend retreats, summer mission trips, and discipleship)
      • Develop programming that promotes service, Christian education, worship and social engagement opportunities for Youth.
      • Guide the Youth Resource Team to plan an annual calendar through collaboration with the church staff and in support of the congregational ministries calendar.
    • Young Adult Ministry
      • Develop programs for Young Adults that are attractive, engaging and welcoming of the community beyond St. John’s current membership.
      • Equip the congregation grow an open and vibrant community of Young Adults at St. John’s.
      • Collaborate with ministerial staff and lay leaders in worship planning to facilitate inclusion of Young Adults in worship roles and to make worship more meaningful to Young Adults.
      • Manage external and internal communications for Young Adult engagement and outreach across social media and other communication platforms.

Where We’ve Been

A Brief History

A meeting of some 200 worshipers to organize St. John’s Baptist Church occurred March 26, 1922. This meeting was the culmination of a series of gatherings, prayer groups and conferences of Baptists concerned with the progress of their denomination in what was then eastern suburban Charlotte.

The church had begun primarily as an outreach of First Baptist Church, but in action that was perhaps to portend events to come, the small group of pioneers determined to accept full responsibility for establishing the new church without help from existing congregations. Just four years later, they dedicated the main sanctuary building in 1926.

Dr. Joseph A. Gaines (1922-1929) and Dr. Chauncey. W. Durden (1929-1944) served as the first two pastors, leading the church through financial crises and establishing it on sound footing.

Dr. Claude U. Broach became senior minister in 1944 serving until 1974. Under his leadership, St. John’s realized its most significant growth in missions and community ministry. Dr. Broach led the church to develop and nurture the “servant church” concept.

Dr. Julian Cave, senior minister from 1975 to 1986, broadened the church’s social ministry and its impact on the community at large. St. John’s completed numerous mission projects such as building a church in Pinch, West Virginia, and constructing homes in Charlotte through Habitat for Humanity.

Dr. Thomas H. Graves became the fifth pastor in October 1987 – 1991. He helped initiate a revitalization of the St. John’s spirit before leaving to become the first president of the new Baptist Theological Seminary in Richmond.

Dr. Wm. Richard Kremer served as St. John’s sixth pastor from November 1991 until June 2009. He came to St. John’s after pastorates in Kentucky and South Carolina. He played a vital leadership role in the United Baptist Association, which is a multi-racial, non-geographical association. He worked diligently to expand its mission.

In October 2009, Dr. Layne Smith came to serve as Intentional Interim Pastor, leading the church through a self-study. He facilitated the work of the church in remembering and celebrating where it has been and in clarifying its future focus as well as its mission in the world.

Dr. Dennis W. Foust became the seventh pastor of St. John’s in August, 2011. He is guiding the congregation in a journey of renewal by building upon its legacy as a creative and progressive ecumenical voice gathering in the revitalized center city of Charlotte and scattering to continue the ministry of Jesus throughout the metro region.

Where We Are Going

St. John’s is a leadership church in Charlotte. As we approach our second century of ministry in 2022, we are excited about our future opportunities to impact the Queen City with God’s Good News. Our strong servant orientation of Active Faith is supported by worship that is both participative and reverent; by a renewed focus on spiritual growth and learning; and by intentional expressions of compassionate care. We are expanding our efforts of outreach and creating new pathways of connecting our message with the residents of metro Charlotte. Because we offer an inclusive and ecumenical message, our members are drawn from the entire metro Charlotte region, the fifth fastest growing city in the region.

The Elizabeth Neighborhood and Charlotte, NC

Located at the corner of Hawthorne Lane and Fifth Street, St. John’s Baptist Church is 1.9 miles from the intersection of Trade and Tryon Streets, in the Charlotte Center City. The Charlotte, North Carolina metropolitan area has a population of 1.8 million people which continues to grow. Identified as one of our nation’s most livable communities, it ranks high regarding quality of life.

Factors such as affordability, ease of commute, ability to connect with other parts of the world, a thriving arts and science community, professional sports and a talented diverse labor force encourage financial investment in the region, new businesses, quality employees and employment opportunities. Despite economic downturns, Charlotte is the second largest banking center in the U.S. Charlotte has changed during the last half century. No longer do workers turn out the lights and leave the city center when the workday ends. Charlotteans, metro neighbors and tourists flood the streets each evening and on weekends to enjoy world-class events, entertainment and restaurants which are readily available.

When St. John’s was founded in 1922, she was considered an outreach ministry to the developing suburbs of the Elizabeth and Myers Park neighborhoods. According to historian Dr. Dan Morrill, both were among the most fashionable of Charlotte’s residential areas. During the past century, the city has experienced widespread growth. The metropolitan area extends in almost every direction to the Mecklenburg County line. St. John’s remains in her original location, a landmark in the currently rejuvenating Elizabeth Community. Her neighbors include Novant-Presbyterian Hospital, a large medical complex, businesses, fine dining and neighborhood pubs. There are wide, tree lined streets with single-family and multi-family dwellings and one of the nation’s oldest and most beautiful city parks.

Throughout St. John’s history, members have come from both the immediate neighborhood and the surrounding metro area. Her reach extends from the heart of Elizabeth to communities in Lake Norman and Union County. The congregation is committed to reaching out to neighbors in the Elizabeth neighborhood and beyond. St. John’s strives to identify and address the physical and spiritual needs of her community.

In the first decade of the 21st century, St. John’s has recognized a new local community which has rapidly grown up within a three-mile radius of the church. It not only includes the Elizabeth neighborhood, but newly built Center City residences housing large numbers of urban dwellers. Currently there are 99,459 people residing in 44,241 households in the defined area and that number is projected to consistently increase over the next five years. According to a 2010 report by Percepts, a leading provider of demographic data to faith institutions, individuals 49 and younger make up 75% of the population. “Diversity” best characterizes this community. Racial/ethnic diversity is evident: the white and African-American populations are almost equally represented at approximately 43% and 41%, respectively. Hispanics and other minorities comprise the remaining 16%. The Percepts (2010) demographic study found the lifestyle group of Ethnic and Urban Diversity to be the largest at 38.8%, the Young and Coming follows closely with 35.8% of the total population. Affluent Families (11%) and Middle American Families (9.8%) round out the four largest lifestyle groups within St. John’s local community. The variety of lifestyles, wide range of income levels, high numbers of nontraditional families, above average number of rental dwellings, and the above average number of economically struggling households present special opportunities and challenges. The nearby neighbors provide St. John’s a source of new and unique talents.

In the document defining core values, St. John’s declared a continuing commitment to local service with the following:

“We are a servant Church with a primary focus on local community outreach and missions. While we will serve God’s children as God leads us, we recognize that as a center-city community of faith, we have a special responsibility to seek opportunities that will address the unmet social and spiritual needs of communities and individuals within central Charlotte.”

In addition, St. John’s embraces the wide range of diversity in her newly identified local community, as stated in the following:

“We are committed to the principals of inclusion and openness to all who seek to be a Child of God. We will not allow discrimination in our membership policy against anyone because of race, gender, sexual orientation, station in life or previous religious affiliation. We have settled this position as policy and embrace it fully.”

Throughout her history, St. John’s has maintained a commitment to strengthening relationships with her neighbors in Charlotte and the larger community of faith. The congregation and staff have examined and take seriously these relationships.

Who We Are

Church Demographics

In preparation for calling new ministry staff members, a task force recently researched some of the demographics of St. John’s. As of 2019, we found that the church rolls listed 1,262 adults. Of those adults, the task force identified 398 as “active” congregants (meaning they had active involvement in the worship and programs of St. John’s). In addition to the active adults, the task force identified approximately 34 children and 48 youth who met the “active” definition. There were also 24 college-aged children of St. John’s families with whom our staff maintains communication. Finally, there were also 39 “neighbors”, who are congregants that, due to age or illness, can no longer attend activities at the church, but receive visits, correspond with us and are considered part of the St. John’s community.

The total active population was 519 people. By age, they break down as follows:

 

Age Range

Number

% of Total

Preschool

14

2.7%

Elementary

20

3.9%

Youth

48

9.2%

20s

26

5.0%

30s

54

10.4%

40s

44

8.5%

50s

61

11.8%

60s

93

17.9%

70s

73

14.1%

80s

39

7.5%

90s

8

1.5%

Neighbors

39

7.5%

Total/%

519

100.0%

These population numbers represent only those congregants who have a formal, regular relationship with St. John’s. They do not include the thousands of guests, community members and partners who grace our facilities every day of the year.

Our Structure and Leadership

Leadership at St. John’s starts with the congregation – we are all participants in God’s servant church. The people of St. John’s work with our equipping ministers and administrative staff to guide the church in its ministries.

The congregation ordains a Diaconate, setting apart deacons as servant leaders of the church. Each year, members of the congregation elect a slate of sixteen (16) members to serve three (3) year terms as deacons. The forty-eight deacons are divided among three panels according to their skills and interests: Administrative (covering Finance, Human Resources, etc.); Ministries (covering Outreach, Education, Worship, etc.); and Pastoral (covering Congregational Care, Relationship Building, etc.). These three panels work collaboratively and in conjunction with the Church Council (comprised of the officers of each of the three panels in addition to the Chair of the Diaconate) to determine, initiate, and support the various ministries and actions of St. John’s Baptist Church.

The Diaconate and the Church Council appoint small groups to accomplish objectives of the church. Standing resource teams administer ongoing needs of the church (for example, the Finance Resource Team, the Personnel Resource Team, the Worship Resource Team, the Missions Resource Team). Short term task forces approach projects for finite time periods (such as the current Search Task Force seeking new ministry staff). Members of our ministry staff serve as liaisons to the deacon panels, resource teams and task forces to insure that congregation and staff are working together to achieve the church’s objectives.

Our Connections

St. John’s is a Baptist community of faith. Our congregation treasures the distinctive qualities that have characterized Baptists throughout history, including the sanctity of each individual’s personal relationship with God, the autonomy of the local church and the separation of church and state. St. John’s takes pride in its affiliations with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship and the Alliance of Baptists. Nonetheless, loyalty to denomination is secondary to the higher authority of God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.

St. John’s has never depended upon denominational formalities to form connections with the outside world. Partnerships that shape the St. John’s identity in the community have traditionally begun with the passions of a few inspired members and grown into church-wide priorities. This person-by-person approach to connections has led to an eclectic mix of missions and partnerships for St. John’s, but the unique passion behind each relationship provides depth and meaning. Examples of connections at St. John’s include:

  • Active involvement in local missions, including Crisis Assistance Ministry, Mecklenburg Ministries, Hope Chapel and Room in the Inn.
  • Nonprofit and charitable organizations which make use of our facilities, including Church World Services (CROP Walk), Urban Ministry Center’s “Room in the Inn”, Right Moves for Youth, the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections, St. John’s Weekday School, and various support groups and Bible study groups.
  • Community and neighborhood groups like Novant-Presbyterian Hospital, and other arts, education, and neighborhood groups that use the facility on a regular basis.
  • Partnership in The Elizabeth Communities of Faith, a cross-denominational group of Elizabeth neighborhood churches plus the chaplaincy groups of the local hospitals.