Commissioned pastors in the Reformed Church in America are elders who serve under the jurisdiction and within the boundaries of a particular classis, and who have completed a training and study program approved by the classis.
They are individually commissioned for a specific ministry need, which could be the need for a preacher or pastor in a small congregation, for a church staff member, church planter, or hospice worker, or for any other area of ministry that the classis deems appropriate to the training and gifts of the commissioned pastor.
A person retains the designation “commissioned pastor” only for the period of time that he or she is actively serving in a ministry approved and commissioned by the classis.
The performance of each commissioned pastor is evaluated annually by the classis. The classis will also assign a mentor for the period of training and ministry of each commissioned pastor candidate.