Pastors have great responsibilities.
It doesn’t matter if you see the role of a pastor as being a shepherd, teacher/preacher or CEO of the church. Regardless of your view of the role of a pastor, God’s word tells us they must give “an account.” Hebrews 13:17: “Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you.” The office of a pastor is a great responsibility
Pastors are human and, contrary to what many church members think, they have personal challenges such as dealing with criticism and conflict, family problems, stress, depression, burnout, sexual temptations, financial problems and time management. These are only a few of the challenges your pastor may be experiencing.
Pastors lack the relational support we all need for stability and resilience.
We all need people we can lean on, trust and call on during the challenges of life. Who does a pastor or their spouse turn to when they need a safe place to process life’s difficulties? Most church members have never considered this question.
Pastors need a safe place.
In order to finish well, pastors need a place that will be non-judgmental, and a place that will provide outside encouragement, counsel and accountability. This will enable them to live and serve out of spiritual, emotional and relational health and well-being.
The majority of ministers shepherd churches with memberships under 150. The economic downturn in America has greatly affected the financial solvency of churches, which has affected the income of pastors across the US. As well, the number of bi-vocational pastors continues to grow because more churches cannot afford to fully compensate a pastor and meet their other expenses. Simply stated: most pastors cannot afford to invest fully in the care they need.
However, pastors need this program to be emotionally healthy, to grow personally, and to develop as a shepherd leader in the church. As pastors are supported, they will be enabled to remain in ministry, fulfill their responsibilities, build healthy churches and lead in transforming their communities for Christ!