This dissertation offers a balanced perspective on the problems, challenges, and future facing those called to pastoral ministry. Slamming, bashing and berating denominational leaders and/or laymen and local church boards serves no useful purpose. Blaming, finger pointing, and name-calling may be common place in the corporate world but not the Kingdom world. I will avoid undo bias in favor of pastors, and unnecessary criticism directed toward others. I am after solutions that profit everyone and promote the priesthood of all believers in an atmosphere of cooperation and unity.
As a matter of understanding, I am operating from the premise that those called to pastoral ministry really do intend to do the ministry of pastoring for a lifetime. That is to say, they are not using the pastorate as a springboard into some other field of ministry endeavor. That is not to minimize other ministry pursuits or positions but rather to validate the pastoral role in the local church as the place where the greatest potential for effective change can happen in people’s lives. Enabling and empowering those in pastoral ministry to stay the course and finish strong will have a far-reaching effect upon the Church of Jesus Christ as a whole and a lingering legacy in the local church as well.
With these issues on the table and in the open before us, I want to examine the problems facing those in pastoral ministry.