It struck me that the situation was handled poorly, when it could have had quite positive outcomes if handled better. The context seemed to imply that the leadership felt a bit threatened and weren't too keen on the personality of the intercessor.
So I want to come at this situation from 2 angles. The first angle is where intercession sits in the body of Christ, and the second angle is 'Why would a request like this be made in the first place?'
Each believer in Jesus Christ who has been incorporated into His Body through baptism shares in the priestly, prophetic and kingly ministry of Jesus. The priestly ministry is offering up prayer and sacrifice for others, the prophetic is telling of God's good news of salvation, and the kingly is service of the needy and vulnerable (eg traditionally widows, orphans and strangers).
We know that Jesus is continually interceding for us. Heb 7:25 'His power to save is utterly certain because He is living forever to interceded for all who come to God through Him'. We know that we are to follow Him and to imitate Him, our leader and Head.
This means that intercession for others is an expected and normal part of being a Christian. But just as with the prophetic and kingly ministries of Jesus, we share in them in various degrees according to the call of God upon our lives.
There is the ordinary call as given in 1 Tim 2:1-2, 'First of all, there should be prayers offered for everyone – petitions, intercessions and thanksgiving – and especially for kings and others in authority so that we may be able to live religious and reverent lives in peace and quiet'.
To some the Holy Spirit gives a charism of intercession, which can take the form of a gift, ministry or office.
The gift normally manifests itself in an impulse or nudge from God to pray for a certain person or situation, and that impulse or urge lifts when the breakthrough is obtained. These tend to be short in duration and carry a degree of urgency eg You get woken up in the night with the need to pray for your nephew, you pray until peace comes, and the next day you find out he had been in a life and death situation. God can operate a gift like this in anyone at any time. You have a certainty that God wants you to pray for this person or situation, to pray right now, and even an understanding of how you are to pray – including what tools in your prayer arsenal you are to use in prayer. This is far beyond sitting in a circle and praying one after each other for your best guess at what the greatest needs are and your best guess at what prayers are aligned with God's will.
The ministry is the next level of charism where the Holy Spirit places prayer burdens upon a person, with some regularity and frequency, and involves responding with fasting and commitment and can include the experience of travailing in prayer. Generally the community catches on that when this person prays, God seems to answer quickly and powerfully, and those with a ministry of intercession get invited to intercessory prayer meetings.
The office is the next level of charism where it becomes increasingly obvious to the person and to the community that there is a special anointing upon their lives to pray for 'big stuff', think John Sanford and his intercessory metron for weather patterns and natural disasters. Other metrons could be for a city, a region, a nation or for particular groups of people (law enforcement, catechists) or particular situations or causes (cessation of abortion, conversion of teenagers, prayer partnering a ministry of the community). Those with an office like this usually develop mentoring and impartation roles to others less experienced in being used by the Holy Spirit with this charism.
If we recall the parable of Jesus about the persistent widow and the unjust judge, Luke 18: 1-8, then you can expect those with this charism to be people of perseverance, 'pester power', a bit intense at times, and maybe even a little pushy (think Abraham in Genesis 18:22-33). But if you remember that God made them this way for His special intercessory purposes, then you won't take too much offence at them, and give them a bit of leeway because you don't know just how heavy a burden God has placed upon them, and such a burden makes a person less able to see the big picture and wider perspectives. That is why they need good and understanding leadership which takes time to really listen to them - when the temptation is to fob them off at the first opportunity because they feel like an annoyance.
All leaders have a duty to intercede and pray for those who have been entrusted to their leadership. It is part of the job of a leader. Often those prayers are at the ordinary level unless there is a major threat or opportunity coming towards the community, when the charism at gift level will manifest. Leaders with prophetic gifts will have associated intercessory gifts because many times the promises of God require long term intercession in order to come to fruition.
Frequently a prophetic charism will lead to growth in intercessory charisms and an intercessory charism will lead to growth in prophetic charisms.
Why would a request like this be made in the first place?
It could be a genuine request according to the Will of God.
It could be a symptom of something lacking in the way leadership is conducted.
Or a bit of both.
A good leader will know whether the person claiming to be an intercessor has the charism of intercession and at what level he/she has it. If you don't know, then you will have to ask questions, listen carefully, and pray for discernment. It is part of the task of a leader to see the beginnings of ministry level charisms, to notice them, to nurture them, and to put boundaries, protections and communication channels in place to enable them to grow safely.
A wise leader will have communication channels in place so that regular updates of what God is doing in and through the prophets and intercessors in the leader's community are received. If independent reports from your intercessors show a shift to several intercessors praying for unmarried mothers, then that's probably a heads up from God about where He wants to develop the community's next outreach ministry.
If your leadership pipeline has stalled, and there have been no changes in senior leadership team in the last 5 – 10 years, then this request could be a symptom of not raising up the next generation of leaders.
If there has been a leadership emphasis and community culture of honouring those in visible positions of ministry leadership (preachers, pastors, worship leaders, youth leaders, administration) and not giving honour to the invisible positions of ministry (intercession, street evangelism, caring for the infants, sick and elderly, hospitality), then there is going to be various levels of frustration and not feeling valued among those in invisible positions of ministry and corresponding desires to be seen and appreciated. There is a human tendency for this imbalance to happen, and it has to be consciously fought against on a regular basis.
The request could be a disguised plea for help in discerning where God wants them to serve and/or the manifestation of a desire to be more involved and committed.
Therefore the first thing to do when a request like this comes to your leadership is to see it as a gift and opportunity, and not as a hassle.
Then you do your due diligence and work out whether at what level of charism the person is experiencing God's action in his/her life. The higher the level, the more likely God is in the request.
Then you do your due diligence and determine whether there are other charisms of the Holy Spirit regularly active in his/her life. The more there are, the more likely God is in the request.
Then you obtain some objective assessment of leadership potential. The StrengthsFinder questionnaire is a very good tool for this. The presence of influencing themes means that he/she should be in some form of leadership. Your task is then to work out where that should be happening, and the other theme results will give good clues to that answer. For example if the person is high in empathy and harmony, and has a theme from the influencing domain, then leadership of a hospital visitation or aged care visitation group might be the answer.
However the absence of influencing themes doesn't let you off the hook. You then need to look at the mix of themes of everyone on your senior leadership team and compare them with your intercessor requester. If the themes of the intercessor requester fill in the domain weaknesses of your senior leadership team, then God is in the request and you need to at least give it a 3 month trial and see how it goes.
If there no influencing themes and the themes they do have will not bring greater balance to the senior leadership team, then that's not where they are called at the moment. But there could be other ministry teams in the community for which they are a perfect fit. Work out where that is and plug him/her into it, reminding them that every leader is only as effective as the team they have around them, and every 'supporting the leader' role is important.
The bottom line is that if a person comes to you with a request to join your leadership team, you do them, yourself and the community a grave disservice unless you help get them into the ministry role that God has uniquely equipped them for.