Encouraging Overwhelmed Pastors

Church Conference Rochester

Tomorrow at Northridge, we have an event for lead pastors called “LEAD.” It is a one day conference especially for lead pastors. The reason we are doing this is because we thinking the leadership role of the lead pastor is unique. At our 16:5 conference every year we challenge and encourage pastors, staff, leaders, and volunteers about being a church that makes more and better disciples.

There are some issues that lead pastors face that the rest of the staff, leaders and volunteers don’t face. This one-day conference is geared toward encouraging them, challenging their thinking, and helping them strategize about next steps.

Pray for that conference tomorrow if you think of it.

Recently I ran across some statistics in Leadership Journal. The article is called “Fail: Finding Hope and Failure in the Midst of Ministry Failure.”

  • 80% of pastors are discouraged in their role as pastors.
  • 40% of pastors seriously considered quitting their job and no longer pastoring in the past three months.
  • 50% of pastors say they are unable to meet the demands of their job and are so discouraged that they would leave the ministry if they could, but have no other way of making a living.
  • For every 20 pastors who go into ministry, only one retires from the ministry.
  • 25% of pastors have been forced out or fired from their ministry at least once.
  • 45% of pastors say they’ve experienced depression or burnout to the extent that they need to take a leave of absence.
  • Of 1,050 pastors surveyed by the Schaeffer Institute, every one of them—100 percent—had a close associate or friend from seminary who had left the ministry because of burnout, conflict in their church, or from a moral failure.
  • 70% of pastors say they do not have a single close friend, and the same percentage say they have lower self-esteem than when they entered the ministry.
  • Denominational health insurance agencies report that medical costs for clergy are higher than the average professional group.

Pray for encouragement for these pastors tomorrow. And pray that we are able to help them to strategize about how they can better lead their churches to make more and better disciples.

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