I love being a pastor! I love doing ministry with people who are hurt, broken, lost, confused, people who are just like me. I love being with people that want to worship God. I love the feeling that maybe I am making a difference in the world. I also love the knowledge that God has called me – called me – to stand in the gap and show his love to people. But I have been through so much conflict, stress and criticism that I am exhausted! I’m ready for some extended sabbath time, but worry if I step away, am I going to want to return?
These kind of things go running through my head and then I read an article with some statistics that scare me to death. When you look at them, makes you wonder why anyone would want to follow this calling on their life. Personally, I can’t imagine doing anything else!
Where do you think you fit in these numbers?
- 80% of pastors say they have insufficient time with spouse and that ministry has a negative effect on their family.
- 40% report a serious conflict with a parishioner once a month.
- 33% say that being in ministry is an outright hazard to their family.
- 75% report they’ve had a significant stress-related crisis at least once in their ministry.
- 58% of pastors indicate that their spouse needs to work either part time or full time to supplement the family income.
- 56% of pastors’ wives say they have no close friends.
- Pastors who work fewer than 50 hrs per week are 35% more likely to be terminated.
- 40% of pastors considered leaving the pastorate in the past three months.
- Fifteen hundred pastors leave the ministry each month due to moral failure, spiritual burnout, or contention in their churches.
- Fifty percent of pastors’ marriages will end in divorce.
- Eighty percent of pastors and eighty-four percent of their spouses feel unqualified and discouraged in their role as pastors.
- Fifty percent of pastors are so discouraged that they would leave the ministry if they could, but have no other way of making a living.
- Eighty percent of seminary and Bible school graduates who enter the ministry will leave the ministry within the first five years.
- Seventy percent of pastors constantly fight depression.
- Almost forty percent polled said they have had an extra-marital affair since beginning their ministry.
- Seventy percent said the only time they spend studying the Word is when they are preparing their sermons. [compiled by Darrin Patrick]
- Prayer for Pastors (barefootpreachr.org)
- Bearing with One another in love (peterlantz.wordpress.com)
- A Small Church Redefines its Mission (barefootpreachr.org)
- A pastor oppressed (eardstapa.wordpress.com)
- “Single, Female Pastor” Revisited – Perspectives by female clergy highlighted (hackingchristianity.net)
- Two-Job Preachers! (brianeraines.wordpress.com)
- Walking In My Pastor’s Shoes (cindyholman.wordpress.com)
- Death by Ministry