Our church has been struggling with finding people to stand for the office of pastoral elder for years now, which is likely a problem encountered in many churches. Currently all our members are assigned to a Care Group with 1 elder and 1 deacon, with an expectation that the elders conduct an annual home visit. Two years ago we also introduced small groups, some of which are led by the same people, but not all. At any rate we have some overlap and as part of our visioning process which we're presently engaged in, we are looking at this overlap, at church leadership structures in general, as well as how to most effectively meet the pastoral care needs in the congregation. We are therefore hoping that other churches who have done some restructuring, or who have both care groups (or system where every household is assigned an elder) and small groups (voluntary), might be willing to share their leadership structure with us.
How can the church most effectively meet the pastoral care needs in the congregation?