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Pastor's Health, Uncategorized

Top Ten Discouragements for Local Pastors and Staff

man-discouragedI recently read an article by Thom Rainer who had done some research on the top discouragements for Pastors and Church Staff.  I thought this would go well with prior articles of challenges and encouragements for pastors (see the Recent Related Post links below).

Although there are many challenges and discouragements for pastors from pay, to denominational support, inadequate training, a lack of volunteers to a whole lot more.  Thom Rainer, who is the CEO of Lifeway Research and has written a number of books including: Simple Church, I Am a Church Member and Autopsy of a Deceased Church.  He asked for response to the top sources of discouragement for pastors and church staff.  Here is there response:

Admittedly, there is overlap in some of these responses, but those who responded often made their own distinctions. A representative quote follows each category.

  1. Conflicts/complaining/murmuring.  One pastor complained of church members using social media to spread their negativity.

  2. Lack of spiritual fruit and maturity in church members. A lack of spiritual growth or exercising fruit is disheartening.

  3. Apathy.  A lack of spiritual hunger and desire in the congregation.

  4. Church members who leave the church for seemingly small and insignificant reasons. The idea that someone would leave the church because the worship service starts 15 minutes early is extremely difficult to understand.

  5. Expectations by members/lack of time.  Many pastors are unable to keep up the expectations of the parishioners.

  6. Performing tasks where the pastor/staff does not have competencies.  They did not teach me this is seminary.

  7. Meetings/committees.  One pastor said that the monthly meetings were a place for complainers and whiners to voice their negativity.

  8. Family concerns.  I served as a pastor at one church, where one church member was calling church members on Easter to complain about my wife.

  9. Staff issues.  Nothing can damage momentum in a church or discourage a pastor like staff conflict.

  10. Lack of volunteers.  The workload grows for the pastor and staff when there are limited volunteers.

Thom Rainer also listed and number of other causes of discouragement that include: loneliness; communication; members who hold obstinately to tradition; divorce/family problems among church members; low pay; and counseling.

I pray that you will be encouraged as you continue in your ministry to the body of Christ.  Recent related posts are The Top Ten Causes of Depression in Pastors and Eight Characteristics of Emotionally Healthy Pastors.

The original post by Thom Rainer is linked here.

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