Below are some frequently asked questions about Relevant’s leadership transition. Click on a question to expand the answer.
What is the leadership transition that is happening at Relevant Church?
After 12 years of founding and leading the ministry of Relevant Church, Pastor Matt McGarity is handing over the role of Lead Pastor to Pastor Josh Hair.
How does this transition impact me as a partner or attendee at Relevant?
Relevant has been blessed to have Pastor Josh Hair as part of staff for over 7 years. He has been an integral part of the growth of the church and has been directly involved in many of the leadership decisions throughout those years. As such, the church — in its current state — is the church Pastor Josh has already participated in leading…and is ready to lead into the future.
With any transition in leadership there is expected change. But for the most part, we do not anticipate that you, as a partner or regular attendee, will experience much change. Relevant’s mission remains the same, “Connecting a changing world with an unchanging Word.”
How will the leadership transition work?
Pastor Matt, Pastor Josh, the Board of Directors, and the Elders have been working together to make the transition as smooth as possible. Additionally, Pastor Matt will remain available to serve as a consultant, mentor, and as Chairman of the Board of Directors.
On a practical level, Pastor Josh will become the Lead Pastor, fulfilling the responsibilities of that role. We are excited to see how God is going to work through Pastor Josh’s unique gifting and skillset to lead Relevant into the future.
How long has this plan been in the works?
Pastor Matt’s vision has always been to identify, recruit, train, equip, and unleash leaders. Simultaneously, Pastor Matt and Elizabeth have sensed God’s calling toward the mission field that exists in the US military. His investment in Pastor Josh has been a part of these complimentary visions for a long time.
What is the timetable for the transition?
The transition of the Lead Pastor role will be celebrated during both of our Sunday worship services on July 23rd. Pastor Matt will be passing the “Shephard’s Staff” to Pastor Josh.
Who is the leadership at Relevant and what is their input/involvement in the transition plan?
Relevant’s leadership consists of a governing Board of Directors, an Elder Board that provides spiritual guidance and leadership, and the staff team. All of the leadership parties, together, are involved at the various levels of forming and executing the transition plan.
Was there a disagreement that led to the transition of leadership?
In fact, it is in a spirit of unity that this transition of leadership is happening. Pastor Matt and his family are transitioning as “sent missionaries” from Relevant Church. Pastor Matt is a champion and mentor of Pastor Josh, and will remain as Chairman of the Board of Directors.
Unlike the succession of leadership that often happens in churches, Relevant is focused on having a legacy of leadership that will prayerfully make this transition smooth and God-honoring.
What will Matt McGarity be doing? What will his role/involvement be within the church moving forward?
Pastor Matt and his family will continue the vision of Relevant Church by expanding the Gospel through the ministry to the military. As an active-duty Chaplain in the US Navy, he and his family will serve their next duty assignment in Washington D.C. They will be moving there to begin ministry on August 1st, where he will continue the chaplaincy ministry he’s been involved in for years.
The McGarity family will remain as partners of Relevant Church and active members of the missions team.
Additionally, Pastor Matt and Elizabeth will continue serving on the Board of Directors providing support, accountability, and spiritual covering.
How will the mission/vision of Relevant change as a result of the transition?
Relevant’s mission & vision will not change.
We will continue to exist, ”Connecting a changing world with an unchanging Word.”
We will continue to be a church that supports local and global missions.
We will continue to be a church that is for our community.
While the practical methods for how we accomplish our mission change as needed, our God-given calling will remain unchanged.
What does this mean for the worship pastor/director search?
Pastor Josh has been leading the search team for this position, so practically nothing changes as a result of the Lead Pastor transition.
Are there any other staff changes along with this transition?
There are no other staff changes currently planned as a result of the Lead Pastor transition. While, practically speaking, there could be staff additions or other position changes down the road to support Pastor Josh’s vision of leading the staff team, no changes are immediately planned.
At Relevant, we work very hard at being appropriately transparent about everything we do — including with staff transition. Church staffing is made up of individual people who come together, often for specific periods of time, to accomplish the mission. Once people feel a calling to leave staff, we celebrate with them and honor the God-direction of their lives.
How can we honor the McGarity’s?
Pastor Matt, Elizabeth, and the McGarity family have truly been a gift to us at Relevant. We are grateful that they followed God’s calling on their lives to plant Relevant Church 12 years ago, and thankful for how they’ve led us so well all these years. Although they are still a part of the Relevant family, we want to honor them and “send” them off well. We are joyfully sad to see them go. It is bittersweet.
Plans for a formal celebration are underway and additional details will be released soon. Furthermore, we will be celebrating them as we celebrate Relevant’s 12th Birthday on July 16, 6:00pm – 8:00pm at the CSD YMCA.
The McGarity’s will be around until the end of July. We encourage you to love on them, pray for them, and share your stories of how they’ve impacted your life. A formal send-off is planned for July 30th during each worship service.