Pastoral Ministry

The Bi-vocational Revolution Most Churches Are Missing

"Though we don’t have precise data, we estimate that there are over one million bi-vocational pastors and church staff in North America alone. That number is increasing during the pandemic. Indeed, most churches have at least one bi-vocational staff member." - Thom Rainer

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Seattle police officer shares benefits, challenges of bi-vocational ministry

"Serving as a bi-vocational pastor has undeniable challenges...both pastors and police officers statistically have high burnout rates. To maintain his mental, emotional and spiritual health, he surrounds himself with biblical support, from his wife and the elders at his church to weekly meetings with a Christian counselor." - C.Post

167 reads

Four Blessings of Close Friendships in Pastoral Ministry

Solitary confinement is said to be one of the worst forms of punishment. Often referred to as “the hole” in prisons, solitary confinement deprives prisoners of communication and conversation, making it a form of torture. Being alone, with no one to share life with, is a horrific way to live. In fact, prolonged time in “the hole” has detrimental mental and physical effects on prisoners.

Pastoral ministry can be a lonely place. But it doesn’t have to be. Years ago it was common for seminary professors to caution aspiring pastors about having close friendships. The thinking was that the closer a pastor is to others, the more vulnerable he is to being hurt and betrayed. This warning contributed to a mentality that deprived pastors and their wives of the blessing of close friendships—both inside the church and among ministry peers. Scripture is replete with warnings of how dangerous it is to live as a loner. Every text about Christian growth in the New Testament says Christlikeness is to be lived out within relationships. This context includes those who have been entrusted as undershepherds to lead the church.

Two specific lists in Romans 16:3–16 and Colossians 4:7–18 seem to indicate that Paul served in ministry within the framework of close relationships. Jesus also served closely alongside others whom He called “friends” (John 15:15). Ministry longevity is interwoven with close and meaningful friendships within ministry.

Let’s consider four key benefits of close pastoral friendships.

1034 reads

How This Introverted Pastor Is Extroverted on Sunday

"Just as Moses, Gideon, and others led through what they felt would handicap them in following God’s call, introverted pastor, you can do this. With God’s help, an understanding family, and some hard, purposeful, intentional work – if God has called you to it, He will equip you." - C.Leaders

437 reads

5 common themes in churches with high pastor turnover

"1. They think it’s the pastors’ fault. It is difficult to help these churches. There is none so blind as he or she who will not see. The church I noted had not even considered that losing six pastors in nine years might point to the problems with the church." - Thom Rainer

507 reads

'Historic night': Saddleback Church ordains first female pastors

"Saddleback Church, the California-based megachurch headed by Pastor Rick Warren, announced that they ordained their first three female pastors, despite being affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, which prohibits female ordination." - C.Post

494 reads