Governance and Management at LIFE
We thought it timely along with the recent transition of our Senior Pastors, to bring clarity and reassurance regarding the structure, roles and responsibilities of our church governance and management.
LIFE is an independent, Pentecostal Christian church, founded in 1991. Although we have no formal denominational associations, we have strong, long-term relationships with many churches throughout New Zealand, Australia and around the world.
LIFE has always believed strongly in the value of leadership as modelled in the Bible. As a result, we have established specific responsibilities and accountabilities ensuring that there is always an appropriate layer of oversight for authority and protection.
The key layers of our church oversight are:
• Senior Pastors
• Executive Team
• Trust Board
• Spiritual Advisors
The people represented within each of these groups are all fully committed to the heart of LIFE and have the callings, giftings and Christ-centred lifestyles as set out by scripture.
Our Senior Pastors are Luke and Melissa de Jong. We are honoured to be serving under their leadership and are excited about the next season with them as our Senior Pastors.
Under the direction of the Senior Pastors is our Executive Team. They are responsible to carry out the effective day-to-day management and functioning of LIFE across its four areas of focus: Church, Community, Business and Kingdom. The Executive Team is made up of: Ps Luke de Jong; Ps Scott Thornton; Paul Schnell; Ps Tim Segedin; Nick Edwards; Jamie Wong; Matthew Linton; Ps Bradden du Jary; and Ps Erin Manners.
In turn, the Senior Pastors and Executive Team are supported by our Eldership. The Eldership’s role is one of covering and support through prayer, wisdom and prophetic insight as they fulfil their biblically-mandated responsibilities. The Eldership Team comprises: Pastors Paul and Maree de Jong (LIFE’s Founding Pastors); Ps Luke de Jong; Ps Scott Thornton; Paul Schnell; Earl Gasparich; Simon Manners; Caroline Wood; Strahan Wallis; and Caroline Quay.
We are protected by our Trust Board whose Trustees, as appointed by the Senior Pastor and ratified by the Eldership, fulfil the governance, health & safety, legal and financial responsibilities of LIFE. They are responsible for all major asset purchases, funding decisions and sign off on the annual budget. At LIFE, Trust Board members also serve as Elders. The Trustees are: Ps Luke de Jong; Ps Paul de Jong; Paul Schnell; Earl Gasparich; Strahan Wallis; and Caroline Quay.
Strengthening our governance and providing another layer of oversight and accountability for the most important matters are our Spiritual Advisors. These are well-respected senior leaders with globally significant ministries who provide spiritual protection for our church. They are: Ps Steve Kelly (Senior Pastor, Wave Church); Ps Joel Cave (Senior Pastor, Glow Church); Ps Mark Varughese (Senior Leader, Kingdomcity Church) and Joel Holm (CEO, Pathfinder International). They may be called upon for advice and recommendations by the Eldership Team on matters of accountability relating to the Senior Pastor and may also be called upon by the Senior Pastor for any major decisions regarding LIFE’s direction. Our Elders ultimately appoint and may remove the Senior Pastors with the support of and unanimous recommendation of our Spiritual Advisors.
We are praying for the Church globally and throughout New Zealand at present that she would continue to operate in a spirit of love, grace and truth.
The Eldership and Trust Board