The search continues

On Sunday 22 October our visiting speaker was Elaine Youngman. She was invited to speak as part of the process we are going through in our search for a senior pastor. Elaine’s profile was received from the Regional Ministers meeting in September and she was subsequently interviewed by the Leadership Board on 26 September.


Elaine is in her final year at Spurgeon’s College where she is studying for a Master of Theology in Advanced Christian Studies. Her background is in youth evangelism. Along with her husband Richard, she was involved for several years with Young Life, an international youth organisation.

Elaine has also been a special education needs tutor at a school in Hertford and a lecturer in Childcare, Education, Maths and ICT at Hertford College before doing a BA in Mission and Ministry at Manchester University.

As a Minister in Training, she has a placement at Hoddesdon Baptist Church in Hertfordshire, where she is the sole minister. She is very highly regarded by the faculty at Spurgeon’s College.


At the end of that interview the Board concluded that Elaine was a very close fit for our profile and personal specification of the person that we are looking for. She is a passionate disciple of Jesus, an enabler and an equipper. She is someone who inspires, a teacher and preacher who disciples others.

Following the interview, we arranged for Elaine to meet our staff team. The time they spent together was very positive, there was good chemistry between our team and Elaine. It helps that Elaine and Darren know each other from Spurgeon’s College.


On the back of a positive interview and meeting with the staff team, we invited Elaine to “preach with a peep” on Sunday 22 October. If you weren’t able to be here on that day a recording of Elaine’s message is in the Resources section. We really enjoyed Elaine’s visit and felt a stronger conviction that she could well be the person we are looking for.

The Leadership Board were completely unanimous in wanting to take the next step with Elaine. So, Elaine has been invited to return on Sunday 19 November to “preach with a view”. I hope that you all can be here that day and please encourage others to be here. Following the service we’ll have lunch, providing an opportunity to meet Elaine and Richard informally, and a question and answer session.


We will be committing to reflect and pray over the course of the week before holding a special church meeting after the service on 26 November to consider calling Elaine to join us at MBC.


One thing to mention is that we, of course, have our own minister in training at Spurgeon’s. I know that many of you have really appreciated the great work that Darren has done in acting up as the leader of the church since Gav left.

One of the things that is key in our thinking is that Elaine made clear to us that she wants to be part of a team. What excites us is the possibility of Elaine and Darren working in partnership, alongside the rest of the team. For our part, we are very conscious that we want someone to join us who will add to our team and complement their gifts and skills.


If you’d like any more information on the process or would like to discuss anything related to this potential appointment please do speak to one of the Board or email