Lead Pastor Search


Aug. 8, 2017

The Pastoral Search Committee has created several “touch point” opportunities for our Narratives peeps to get to know new Lead Pastor candidate Wade Copland, his wife Jessica and their children, Hannah (11), Josiah (9), Malachi (6) and Micah (4).
We’ve tried to create a variety of environments in which to share our hearts with one another. We encourage each of you to participate in as many of the gatherings as you are able. With that in mind, we will be canceling our Missional Community gatherings the week of Aug. 21.
6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 16 – Pastoral Search Committee Q&A
12:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20 – Meet the Coplands Fellowship Meal
6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 23 – Ice Cream Social in the Park
6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 24 – Coffee & Conversation
12:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 27 – Congregational meeting – Vote will be held on Lead Pastor candidate. (In order to participate in this milestone vote, please be sure to have all of your membership paperwork turned into Lori Arnold before Aug. 27. Contact her if you have any questions.)

You can also find out more about that Coplands at:


Aug. 1, 2017

As announced during Worship Service on Sunday, it’s with unity, confidence and joyful expectation that Narratives’ Pastoral Search Committee nominates Wade Copland for our Lead Pastor position. We’ve known God’s faithful goodness in the preliminary processes and are pleased to release the final stages to you, fully expectant of God’s continuance in the same!

You will have numerous opportunities over the next four weeks to learn about, meet and interact with the Copland Family before casting your vote on August 27th.*

For a fast delve, check out Wade’s facebook page. He’s looking forward to accepting your ‘friend request’ so don’t hesitate to send one.

You can read Wade’s Strength from the Sanctuary post on his new blog, and stay tuned for more to come.

Explore The Well Ministry, which Wade and Jessica have been serving in for the last nine years, with related photos here.

The Copland Family is creating a personalized video that will be shown during this coming Sunday’s Worship Service. At the same time, we expect to have a finalized calendar of five “Meet the Copland Family” events happening in August. Therein, we’ve purposed to provide you with enough exposure to and interaction with the Copland Family to make your own genuine and informed decision about their call to Narratives.

With doors of communication wide open, let the relationship-building commence and be continued!

In joy,
Pastor Tami Ashland

*Please connect with Lori Arnold if you have questions about finalizing or confirming your Narratives’ Church Membership status.


June 19, 2017

We’re pleased to announce that our Lead Pastor job posting has captured some significant interest! Of the 43 applicant inquiries (in various stages of investigation and review), we have opened up this abbreviated questionnaire to 11 of them.

On June 22nd, Pastor Tami will present the entire Search Committee with complete packets (resumes, emails, sermon links, social media profiles, questionnaire answers, etc.) of the top 3-4 candidates.

Please partner with us in prayer for Tami this week as she seeks:

  • After God and the leading of His Spirit
  • Depends on Him for knowledge and discernment
  • Narrows the list of best fit candidates by 70%
  • Communicates with the candidates

Your committee will then schedule Skype/facetime/Google Hangout meetings with each of the 3-4 candidates. Combined with the packets of information to review and by consensus, we will then rank the candidates by order of preference as we delve even deeper into getting to know the finalists.

May 15, 2017

Narratives Church has actively begun seeking a new bi-vocational Lead Pastor. We are eager to discover the new work and season God has underway for Narratives. While none of us know precisely what that consists of, there’s no place we’d rather be than right in the middle of what God is doing!


  • “We are a band of REDEEMED liars, cheaters, thieves, gluttons, adulterers, and idol worshippers who desire to abandon ourselves wildly to God, love passionately, serve generously, narrate Jesus conversationally and lead others to the live the same way.”
  • We are a missional non-denominational church plant from 2008 in the San Diego area with 45 people in average weekly attendance
  • LIVE. LOVE. SHARE. is our missional strategy
  • We believe in the deity of Jesus Christ, His imminent return and that the Bible is the infallible Word of God
  • We are a demographically and denominationally diverse community, with backgrounds including Baptist, Pentecostal/Charismatic, Catholic, Methodist, Presbyterian and more
  • http://narrativeschurch.org/


  • You’ve earned a Master of Divinity degree and have two or more years practical pastoral experience
  • You have a proven track record of keeping your life in harmony with the Word of God, being a worthy example of Christian living and having a vital relationship with God, from which your ministry flows
  • You lead and live from a place of authenticity and challenge others toward the same
  • You have strategic leadership ability combined with a collaborative approach
  • You are a lover of people with well‐developed interpersonal skills, being tactful, mature and having a flexible demeanor
  • You are a curious lifelong learner and have a teachable attitude
  • You are serious about the Scriptures, missional living and other biblical disciplines, but don’t take yourself too seriously


  • You will serve as primary preacher and collaborate with leaders to plan weekly worship services
  • You will lead, equip and provide pastoral oversight for and bring alignment to all ministry staff and teams
  • You will advance the missional vision of Narratives Church by developing the congregation as a community that actively cares for one another and intentionally reaches out to those beyond the church walls
  • You will build cooperative partnerships with other ministry leaders and organizations in the San Diego area
  • You will equip, coach, serve, mobilize and deploy the body into ministry opportunities aligned with their call and gifting


  • We will provide a salary and housing allowance for your part-time position, which will last for at least six months and then shift to full-time as committed tithing trends emerge
  • We will commit to and support your successful transition into our city, congregation and your lead pastor position
  • We will embrace change and trust the Holy Spirit’s work therein
  • We will partner with you to help Believers practically work out their relationship with Christ and invite others into relationship with Him
  • We will bring the vital components of “humor and heart” into our relationship with you, as they already thrive within our community

Those interested in applying should contact Pastor Tami Ashland, the search committee chairwoman, at tamisnarrative@gmail.com. Mail inquiries can be sent to Narratives Church, 450 Fletcher Parkway, Suite 224, El Cajon, CA 92020.



By Pastor Mark

May 9, 2017

I’m not even sure how to express thoughts, share my heart, say to you, Narratives peeps, what I’m feeling as I write this letter. This past Sunday—May 7, 2017 at 12 noon—I shared with you the transition that is currently in process of me preparing to move from the position of lead pastor to the church planting elder for Narratives. This means we, Narratives, are searching for a new lead pastor of Narratives Church.

My emotional world is mixing and vacillating between grieving and celebrating.

Grieving because, for the past 8 years, I have served as your pastor—a shepherd, who has not always been perfect, but who has striven to be a good pastor wrapped in His forgiveness and grace. You, Narratives, have been most gracious and patient with me as I have grown and become the man of God that I am today. I have watched each of you struggle and grow in Christ, too. I have prayed over you and have labored each day to serve you to the best of my ability. We have a relationship that is precious beyond words. Letting go is never easy, but it is essential if I/we are to be obedient and for God’s blessings to continue guiding our stories into the future.

Celebrating because I know that when God moves, His ways are faithful. Throughout the past 8 years Narratives has received prophetic words of God’s intentions to expand out impact and influence, to be salt and light, to bless East County and beyond. Just this past week, Darla O’Leary gave a prophetic word—God is turning the page. My wife, Mary, gave a prophetic word of a vision she had: God wants Narratives to break the metal bands that constrict the contents of a wooden crate so that we can reveal and declare God’s majesty to our city. Praise is the metal band breaker! Narratives, you see, is destined to be a community of praise! Knowing this, believing this, I can celebrate God’s ongoing involvement of His church and, therefore, all I can do is celebrate the goodness of God!

I did not see this curve coming. I thought I would always be the lead pastor of Narratives Church. And embracing this curve not gone without challenge. As I shared on Sunday, its been a 2-year journey to get to this place. It is foolish for us—humans—to try to convince ourselves that life will “always be” set in stone, as if life does not change. Life does change, and who can know the mind of God? He is God! It is this truth to which I reconcile and submit my life. It is clear that God is directing.

I am thankful for the Pastoral Search Committee—Tami Ashland (Committee Chair), Chris Helfers, Lori Arnold, and Argel Parker. These men and women are faithful leaders who have at the core of their hearts God’s desire for the right person, and a loyal commitment to you, Narratives, to see our community not only thrive in the Spirit, but also to reach for the stars and become all that God intends for our community.

I am thankful for each of you, Narratives peeps! My family will never be the same. You have watched my kids grow up and my wife become a jewelry magpie! I have a deep love and admiration for each of you and the treasured memories I have stored in my heart will remain a steadfast reminder of what Christ-like love and full acceptance looks like. You are loved!

Moving forward, I am looking forward to the unfolding of God’s plan’s for Narratives and my family. I am committed to you in prayer and continued leadership support as God continues to make that path clear. The goal at this point is to serve Narratives, after a lead pastor is hired, as the elder of Narratives serving in the capacity of expanding Apostolos School of Leadership and Church Planting. As Tami Ashland so succinctly shared on Sunday, though, the search team has committed to seeking God first, then a Lead Pastor. So, with that in mind, we expectantly wait to see what the Lord has in store.

The best years of God’s glorious revelation are ahead of us!

Affectionately yours,

Pastor Mark

P.S. If you have any questions about the process, please feel free to ask anyone on the search committee.





10:30 A.M. - Worship Gathering
(Come early and enjoy coffee and fellowship at 10 a.m.)

10:30 A.M. - 
(Children ages 3-8)