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The Search Committee

3.37 of 5 stars 3.37  ·  rating details  ·  271 ratings  ·  69 reviews
They started out seeking a pastor. But what they found was each other. When a small-town southern church throws a hodgepodge of wildly different personalities together in a van and sends them out to look for a new pastor, the dust gets kicked up in more ways than one. There’s Travis, a young husband whose ambiguity about becoming a father is threatening his marriage. Dot, ...more
Kindle Edition, 382 pages
Published January 20th 2012 by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 483)
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Mark
Take seven people with different personalities, put them in a van to travel in search of a new pastor, and you have the makings of some funny stuff, or a disaster.

The book has a lot of humor in it. To me, the idea of a search committee is foreign to me. A handful (sometimes I think it boils down to one guy, the church boss) of people decide who the church will call, and members vote on him, so I was interested and entertained by how the search committee works. It actually sounds kind of fun.

Each
...more
Chris
During the last few months I’ve talked with and been observed by several search committees. The title and concept of this book stood out to me. It seemed current and important, a must read.

In Tim Owens first book, he tracks a team of folks who climb on a bus and go out in search of a new pastor for their church. The story jumps between segments of their personal lives, the trip, their church and interim pastor. Initially I found myself annoyed with the transitions. I wanted to follow one of the
...more
Jennifer Short
In The Search Committee, Tim Owens introduces us to seven people, all members of a shepherd-less Presbyterian flock. Their duty is to find a man (and some insist it must be a man) to pastor their congregation.

They are as unique as any seven random people in a congregation, and each week they travel in an old church van to hopefully complete their task of finding just the right minister. In an attempt to keep it secret from the churches they visit, they split up during the service and try to keep
...more
Karen
Rating is 4.8... Loved this book. Imagine a group of 7 people in a van every Sunday morning in search of the next pastor for their church. Along the way they have lots of adventures. You will learn about their lives, the people in their lives, and the people at the churches they visit. You will laugh, you will cry, and everything in between. You will learn to love some of these people, like the one who keeps a journal of all the signs out in front of the churches they pass during their travels t ...more
Laura
This is a gem of a book. I laughed out loud and even cried. It's just a fun book with such likeable characters. Great message without just slapping you in the face. I heard about it through my southern reading group. I love that it was set in North Carolina and the personalities showed the south for sure. I'm still laughing about the camp scene, referencing how SC people aren't as good as NC residents and the multiple stops for the ladies to use the restroom. If you want something fun and easy.. ...more
Lillie
I enjoyed the trips the search committee took to check out preachers to "steal" one for their congregation. There were some humorous situations and good characterization of the different personalities involved in the search. The other chapters, about the private lives of the committee members, were inconsistent. Some I really liked, and some I wondered why the people did what they did and why they didn't put their faith into practice--praying or going to the Word for answers to their problems. O ...more
W
This fictional novel about a Presbyterian church's search for a new pastor features the lives of the seven very different people on the search committee and the struggles and trials that they endure during the year that they're thrown together to find a new pastor. Since this is not how our church operates, I was interested in learning about how a search committee works while enjoying a fictional story at the same time.

The story itself was very relate-able to regular churchgoers. My favorite par
...more
Dyana
This was a light-hearted humorous book about 7 people (the search committee) in a small southern Presbyterian congregation who travel in a church van searching to "steal" a new pastor. They try to keep their mission secret in the churches they visit and along the way have plenty of misadventures. We also get to experience some of the sermons they hear along the way. We get a glimpse into their lives - past and present. There is Travis (a young married professional), Bill (retired from electric c ...more
Melissa
The Search Committee is a fun book. Tim Owens wrote a good book about road trips with purpose. I say grab a glass of sweet tea and read this book. This made me laugh out loud. The book starts out with “The church van already had 187, 00 miles on it. It was a white Ford Econoline and Travis figures it was either a 77 or 78 model” and road trip here we come. Let me introduce you to this band of characters. We meet Travis Booth his mission is to drive and find a new pastor well he and 6 others, all ...more
Allizabeth Collins
Description:

When a Protestant church finds itself without a pastor, the church forms a search committee to represent the wants and needs of its congregation. In this case, when a Presbyterian preacher is called to Atlanta, the church's search committee, comprised of Travis, Dot, Susie, Bill, Joyce, Frankie, and Matt, pile into a white '78 model Ford Econoline and start searching for candidates. Just because they have been elected to agree on a new pastor, doesn't mean that they agree on anythin
...more
Tammy
Jan 05, 2012 Tammy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all my friends
Having been reared in church all my life and now serving as a pastor's wife I couldn't put The Search Committee novel down because Tim Owens "hit the nail on the head" with this novel.
Imagine a committee from church being sent out on the road to literally "steal" a pastor. But the committee must all agree on said pastor. And after visiting church after church the wear and tear of being together on the road begins to break down the defenses of each of the committee members. We think we know peopl
...more
Sara
Being originally from a small town in the South, I thoroughly understand the concept (and the pitfalls) of a church search committee. My mom was even on a search committee when I was in middle school.

And just like I have mixed feelings about search committees, I have mixed feelings about this book.

After a slow start – it took a long time for me to figure out exactly where this book was taking place, who was who, and to settle in to the flow of things – I was able to enjoy parts of the novel. Th
...more
Jim
“It had occurred to Travis that it was hard work trying to steal a preacher. There was no easy way to do it.”

When Tim Owens’ book became available via the Tyndale House Blogger Review program, I had to get it. Its title, ‘The Search Committee,” caught my attention as I had an idea of what it would be about. I was not disappointed. And it was about more than I expected with an ending (that you will have to read for yourself) that I did not see coming.

Now in my 25th year of being a minister/pasto
...more
IrenesBookReviews
The Search Committee is written by Tim Owens and published by Tyndale House Publishers.

This is a fun book! The characters are all interesting and make this book an easy read. The plot centers on a group of church members looking for a new pastor. Their personalities are well developed and make this book a must read.

Each person in this group of searchers has their own life and problems to handle as well as trying to find the right person to be their new pastor. From a single mom to a husband not
...more
Faye
A plethora of personalities!


Seven church members are on a mission, to find a preacher for their small Presbyterian congregation. A van of personalities could not be more mixed, come along with The Search Committee as they look for their next pastor and reminisce about days gone past.

Will they find the pastor of their dreams?


I loved the character diversity, and how each person had their own stand-out personality. I really liked getting to know the characters and when it went back to revive some o
...more
Tima
The story involves seven people who have been chosen to pick a new pastor for their church. They drive to each church and go in one by one so the church doesn't know they are evaluating the pastor. Each person has a chance to tell their story and why they are in this small southern town.

The story flowed smoothly, but at times slowly as the church committee searches for a pastor that will help their church grow. It was hard for me to keep track of all of the different lives and what was happening
...more
Mark
The pastoral search committee and search process is a setting that allows the various characters to come together and interact. This book is really not about the search but about the relational dynamics that come from the setting. There are quite a few characters that appear immediately and at first it can be difficult to keep track of who's who. As the story progresses each character is developed, revealing their backgrounds, their hopes, hurts, disappointments, and secrets. The author includes ...more
Karen
Occasionally, very occasionally, I buy books for myself. Usually they are classics. Or, like with The Search Committee, I know the author. In this case, he is part of my writers' group. I have read short pieces of his before and know him to have an intriguing voice in his writing and a strong sense of humor and some quirky characters. All of that is present in The Search Committee. I was, however, surprised by how Southern this novel is.

The real main character in this book is the setting. I had
...more
Lilibet King
Has your church ever searched for a new pastor? Have you ever been on the search committee? Even if this isn’t the case, you’ll be able to relate to The Search Committee, the debut novel from Tim Owens.
A search committee is usually made up of a cross-section of the church membership, and this one is no exception. There’s the retired church elder that drives the van, the opinionated woman who talks non-stop, the resident socially-awkward genius, and the transplanted Yankee. The story is told thro
...more
J.W. Cunningham
What a delightful novel this turned out to be. The book is written by a first time author and was, as so many are, rejected almost 50 times before being reworked and accepted. It is likely to be tagged and noted as Christian Fiction, but I assure you ahead of time that it does not belong in the group of cheesy books that so often define Christian Fiction. This novel is a beautiful picture of the south as well as the importance of a church community. Even more than these though the book tackles m ...more
Sara
A mismatched team of seven hit the road in an Econoline church van on a mission to find a new pastor. They don't agree on much other than the stops at Hardee's for coffee and a biscuit. But they stick to the call, trying to slip undetected into worship services across the Southeast—all in hopes of stealing a preacher for their congregation.

Each member is wrestling to balance their own busy life and personal struggles. And they're trying to keep their issues to themselves. Forced to spend countl
...more
Ellen Dark
I enjoyed the book I received through NetGalley. The Search Committee attracted my attention because our church had recently formed a search committee in order to find a new senior pastor for our church.
Tim Owens writes of a search committee made up of members of a Presbyterian congregation, each person representative of a different demographic in the church. Together they spend their Sundays driving from church to church looking for a potential minister to "steal". The reader learns about the s
...more
Stephanie
I think I would have liked this book a lot more if I was Presbyterian or any other religion where search committees are a thing. A lot of it went over my head given that I'm Catholic and priests are assigned parishes rather than recruited. I didn't connect with the plot at all.

Aside from that I thought that the characters were fairly flat. The book is built upon the lives of main characters, and yet, I was often bored with them. They were pretty one dimensional and just blah. No one was exciting
...more
Bonne
For those who are familiar with the "call" system, I'm sure this book will connect in many ways. However, even those of us who are appointed, as opposed to called, it seems that church people are church people wherever you are. In fact, one could move out and say people are people wherever you are. And people create humor, sorrow, love, hope, trust, distrust as they journey through life. When it is happening to us, it always seems that no one else has ever experienced life in this manner, but th ...more
Theresa
I was hoping for a lot from this little book because I was on a search committee for my church at one point, and was hoping to be able to process a little bit through a fictional account. I knew going into it that the premise was a bit different...these people seemed to focus on the search part, and we spent a lot more time in the committee part. I liked the idea of all of these different people getting to know each other, and I liked that they became more aware of one another, and it seemed to ...more
Kevin W. Jerrell
A good, slow read.

This is not a book with a lot of excitement or action; however, it is a good story with several character storylines.
Micki
The story was too long and drawn out - didn't really like it and though i usually quit reading a book after first chapter if I wasn't enjoying it, for some reason I kept feeling like there was going to be a story in it, besides just each character's sideline story. The only good thing about it for me was the scripture quotes. Once I reached the end of the book, i saw that it was maybe mean to be the way it was, and the author evidently wanted groups to read and discuss it. There were discussion ...more
Bill Tillman
This was interesting read for me as a retired pastor, but I can recommend it to anyone as long as you can read.
At many points along the search for a new pastor, you find seven different people acting and reacting to each other and their world. So the book is full of humor and light hearted adventures. Also there is heartache and tragedy among the committee.
But God's redeeming grace pulls everyone through to a grand finale. A page turner and non-stop ride in a 1977 Ford Econoline van.
Andee Mae
The Search Committe is a realistic portrayal of many pastor search committes. I loved the way Tim Owens explored the personalities of each committee member and let us know what they were thinking and feeling. The interaction between committee members was priceless. One of my favorite parts was when the committee tried to sneak into a worship service without being noticed. Boy, does that bring back memories! Overall, a light hearted book that I think everyone will enjoy.
Diane
Not bad for a first time effort from author Tim Owens. The characters were approachable and interesting. The end was predictable, but still pleasant. Methodists don't have to worry about search committees, but it was interesting to hear how the process worked from the Presbyterian point of view. Particularly enjoyed the three sermons presented...would not have minded hearing any of them from the pulpit.
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Tim Owens has a doctorate in environmental engineering and is the co-owner of an environmental engineering firm. He also holds three patents, is a Scoutmaster, and participated in disaster relief in Honduras and Mozambique as a water systems engineer. He currently resides in Summerville, South Carolina, with his wife and four children.

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