Value-Driven Pastoral WORK

In response to the healthy pushback regarding Value-Driven Pastoral Salaries (below) what would it look like for the minister to also live by the value of integrity in fulfilling proper work expectations.  I think outside of the basic requirements of one’s role, here are some other suggested guidelines driven by the foundational church values of grace, worship, community, mission, & integrity:

  • We believe that rest is key to the continual reenergizing and longevity of a pastor’s ministry.  We require daily periods of rest within the workweek and extended periods of solitude within their work-year.
  • We believe that pastors must exhibit strong missional & community relations with their ministry-networks and neighborhood connections.  A proper balance of “office time” and “life-on-life” time is required.
  • We believe that a pastor’s family is a main priority in which scripture holds them accountable to.  A proper balance of family and work is to be maintained and held at a rate of high accountability.
  • Due to our high value of community, we desire that a pastor’s spiritual feeding towards others does not infringe upon their own necessity of being spiritually fed within their own community.
  • We have a high calling of global missions and awareness.  We desire that every pastor participates in an overseas experience every 3 years to maintain a global perspective for the ministry they shepherd over.
  • We maintain a high value of integrity in which pastors are to work hard and effectively within the given ministry role at an average of 52 hours-per-week.  (This does not include one’s personal worship service.)
  • We desire excellence in ministry, and expect growth within the ministry-work of our pastors.  Effectiveness is determined by the pastor’s supervisor in relation to established trimester-goals (These goals are to be best suited for the pastor’s ministry context.)
  • We recognize that each pastoral role and style demands certain office & out-of-the office ministry.  We do not demand certain office hours, however do ask that pastor’s are available and meet the office needs related to their area of ministry.
  • We desire continual growth in the faith and skills of our pastoral team to pursue ministry effectiveness.  Therefore we ask for pastors to maintain consistency in their personal spiritual disciplines & skill enhancement, while providing continual resources such as publications & conferences.

Further thoughts here?


~ by Dave Smith on April 11, 2008.

6 Responses to “Value-Driven Pastoral WORK”

  1. I might add something about physical fitness. It’s part of our stewardship and it helps us work more efficiently.

    Shouldn’t there be something about their movie intake?? :-))

  2. Yea, good call on the physical fitness. We can definitely go overboard here…but a healthy balance towards good health is key (though not sure anyone would fire Charles Spurgeon for his obesity)

    Regarding movies, yea, I agree that there should be expectations there. Probably the need to watch at least 1 movie a week depicting the dark and sick world we live in. (No movies showing a false reality with happy endings and plastic romance!

    (And definitely no “chick flicks!” :>)

  3. I’ll dive in on the 3rd bullet point. If a pastor is never “off duty”, how do you balance this with family time?

    I have been the beneficiary of late night pastoral care, so I’m realistic to know that pastors can never hold regular hours.

    However, when I reflex on my own experience both in ministry and in corporate life, I have been guilty of losing myself in the job at the expense of family time.

    There’s always a rationale – to provide for someone (my family or the church). But is it always right?

    To compensate for this in my company, my partners and I give ourselves generous vacation. Why don’t pastors give themselves the same permission?

    If the expectation is that a pastor needs to work 60+ hours a week, it begs the question – how does one fulfill the desire / need to spend time with family?

    I perceive an incongruency here, and my answer is to grant more time off, and the board should force the issue for “workaholic” types.

  4. Good point Anthony. There are times we do have to call guys out within the church and business world and tell them they are working too much and they need to take time out. Part of that is good management on the supervisor’s part.

    There is also an issue of “self management” that is needed. Sometimes pastors feel like they are “victims” to the system, when in reality they have more control over their time as to what they can say “yes” and “no” to.

    A larger systems issues that plays into this is if you have a ministry enviroment that is very complex, chaotic, and program driven. The need to constantly be running multiple programs, adhereing to any new ministry opportunity that comes your way, to do it all with excellence, and to be a shepherd on top of it can foster some unhealthy individuals. This is where, again, good management by one’s supervisor have to evaluate how to best support their ministry model in the most effective way (for the long term).

    I like how you mentioned your struggle of working too much in both the church and corporate world. A good picture of how this is a “self management” issue and not necessarily an environmental one. Those struggles follow you everywhere.

    Thanks for contributing.

  5. “a ministry enviroment that is very complex, chaotic, and program driven. The need to constantly be running multiple programs, adhereing to any new ministry opportunity that comes your way, to do it all with excellence, and to be a shepherd on top of it”

    gosh…this sounds familiar for some reason.

  6. Yea, I thought of Camp Gideon too when I was writing it. :>)

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