Encounter Church of Palmyra is a community of faith that seeks to love God and others, be a light to the local community and abroad, and impact all ages, especially the next generation. We typically gather for worship in the heart of Palmyra, Pa., just down the street from many of the local schools. Palmyra offers a small town feel in Lebanon County and yet is experiencing growth and an evolving influx of different cultures.

As a church family of about 600 men, women, and (many) children, we consider ourselves fairly contemporary in style, though we appreciate diverse expressions of worship, and draw from a deep history and tradition. Relationships with God and one another not only develop on Sunday mornings but within Growth Groups, the softball field, a community garden, and gatherings focused on youth and children to name a few. We are grateful for our long history in Palmyra and our recent expansion to a new facility where we have welcomed many new individuals into our community of faith.

As we enter the next chapter of ministry together, we sense a fresh vision among us and we’re excited to welcome a full-time Lead Pastor to guide us into this next season. We seek a relational leader with visionary gifts that inspire, strong preaching focused on the Bible and application to life, and communication abilities that draw people together in unity. An ability to engage and help develop others will be essential in order to serve as a part of and lead a multi-staff church ministry. Above all of these characteristics, we desire a leader who has a heart after God, is full of faith, wisdom and prayer, and has a clear understanding that ministry flows out of a transformed life in Jesus.

Encounter Church of Palmyra has been given a unique role in the greater Palmyra, PA area. With a growing population, Encounter Church seeks to impact its community and the world with the transforming truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This will be accomplished through its mission: “Followers of Jesus Bringing His Love to Life.” As followers of Christ, we are transformed by the grace of Christ, called to live out the Gospel in our lives and families, and by doing this we are an example of the Gospel to the world.


  • To devote energies and action to glorifying God, assisting in the implementation of the Mission and Vision for Encounter Church
  • To pray for Encounter Church – for staff, leaders, church family, and community
  • To assist in providing pastoral care to the congregation
  • To our mission: Followers of Jesus bringing his love to life
  • To our values: Jesus prioritized; growth pursued; people empowered; generations bridged; communities transformed

Primary Role

The Lead Pastor provides leadership to the overall ministry of the church, to fulfill its mission and vision, under the supervision and accountability of the Leadership Team and the Bishop of the Atlantic Conference of the BIC. This includes preaching/teaching and vision casting in fulfillment of ECP’s mission – Followers of Jesus Bringing His Love to Life. The Lead Pastor is directly responsible for Weekend Celebrations in order that we may intentionally create environments where we are engaging in relationships and experiencing God. The following is a summary of the focus areas:

All Staff

  • Personal / Spiritual Growth
  • Vision / Leadership
  • Discipleship/ Evangelism
  • BIC Involvement


  • Preaching / Teaching
  • Leadership Development
  • Weekend Celebrations
  • Growth Groups
  • Pastoral Care

Focus Area 1 – Personal / Spiritual Growth

  • Spend time each day with God in prayer and reading His Word
  • Spend time each month with God in personal retreat (1 day for full-time)
  • Spend quality time with spouse, building into marriage and family
  • Manage finances with integrity / good stewardship

Focus Area 2 – Vision / Leadership

  • Model servant leadership
  • Work with the Leadership Team in promoting and coordinating the vision, mission, and values of Encounter Church of Palmyra
  • Meet with chair of Leadership Team on a regular basis to ensure good communication and follow-up
  • Strategic Planning – looking ahead – envisioning the future
  • Identify and invest in the lives of those with leadership gifts – develop and maintain a Leadership Pipeline

Focus Area 3 – Discipleship / Evangelism

  • Create a culture of discipleship and evangelism that reflects an intentional commitment to the words of Jesus — “Go and make disciples”
  • Provide tangible avenues for people to be “discipled” in their faith as they surrender their lives to Christ
  • Develop opportunities to “go out” and share the Gospel of Jesus Christ both within and outside of the church community.

Focus Area 4 – BIC Involvement

  • As requested, and fits into the overall ministry schedule
  • Attend monthly BIC Lead Pastor’s Cluster for support and encouragement

Focus Area 5 – Preaching / Teaching

  • Serve as the primary preaching / teaching pastor of the congregation
  • Invest quality time in preparation of messages that are biblical, logical, Spirit-anointed and in harmony with the church’s beliefs and doctrines
  • Reading – secular and faith-based – on diverse topics applicable to ministry at
  • Encounter Church
  • Teach Discovering Encounter Church Class on a regular basis
  • Identify and invest in the lives of those with preaching / teaching gifts

Focus Area 6 – Weekend Celebrations

  • Assist in the planning and execution of the Weekend celebrations with Worship Arts Pastor and others as necessary

Focus Area 7 – Growth Groups

  • Organize and provide overall leadership and oversight of the Growth Group ministry, ensuring a pathway for spiritual growth
  • Identify and invest in the lives of those with teaching gifts

Focus Area 8 – Pastoral Care

  • Perform weddings, funerals, baby dedications, baptisms, reception of members, communion, and other special occasions, in conjunction with other staff
  • Ensure that the pastoral care needs of the church family are being met through the ministry of the Care Team and Growth Groups
  • Counseling as appropriate – using referrals both within and outside the church
  • Identify and invest in the lives of those with pastoral / shepherding gifts.

Some previous ministry leadership experience and related education is desired. Candidates must be able to be licensed by the Brethren in Christ U.S.

If interested in applying for this position, please send a resume and cover letter to Bishop Bryan Hoke of the Atlantic Conference of the Brethren in Christ U.S. at bicatlantic@bicus.org.