Posted by: morgan1965 | June 28, 2010

Who is Caring for Your Pastor?

The work of ministry has never been an “easy” assignment. The minister, who is engaged in pastoral ministry, and other forms of ministry, has to have an authentic call from God. Saying yes to God’s call requires a high level of commitment and some degree of personal sacrifice. Pastoral families are intimately involved in this sacrifice.

From my perspective as an ordained minister, I can say that pastoral ministry is a rewarding vocation. I have no regrets about saying yes to God’s call to enter the pastoral ministry of the United Methodist Church.

The ministerial journey, of course, has its joys and concerns for all participants. There are good times and difficult times. God, however, is in the midst of all our experiences and enables both the clergy and the laity to do the work of ministry.

The clergy – lay partnership is essential for effective ministry. We are in the boat together. We share each other’s mutual burdens.

Ministry today is different from the time I entered into pastoral ministry, more than forty years ago. Society is becoming more complex by the day. World and national issues affect the local community. The world is ever changing, but the Church, at times, seems to be slow to respond to social and cultural changes, as well as economic and political changes.

It is important for pastoral leaders to be on the spiritual path with other lay people who are on the spiritual path. Together, these spiritual leaders can continue to grow in Christ and be an encouragement to other pilgrim disciples who might not have the same level of spiritual maturity.

Pastors are asked to care for the congregation. Have you ever stopped to ponder the question of who is caring for the pastor? God, of course, cares for the pastor. Each pastor is expected to engage in self-care. Is this sufficient? The Rev. Dr. Dennis Winkleblack has plumbed this issue in depth and has provided an excellent resource for church folk who want to address the question. He provides some practical insight and makes some helpful suggestions in his resource book titled, “Who Cares for the Pastor?” [A Manual and Workbook for Pastor/Staff-Parish Relations Committees].

(The document can be found at the New York Annual Conference Web Site: Look under resources; then look under pastors.)


  1. True God cares for the pastors and for the people of God, however, God is in heaven so when he wants to care for the needs of his people he will use a human representative. The prophets of old were cared for by the congregation, the Apostle’s were cared for by the saints in the new testatment. 1 Kings 17; 2 Kings 4; Phil 4; and many other examples in the Bible. The Lord allows the people of God to care for the Servant of God. It is a blessed act.

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