25 November 2014

Finances & Ministry: A Delicate Matter.

The more studies we read, the more the topic of finances pops up. While many studies tend to focus on the social and mental health of clergy families, clergy workers and clergy spouses are consistently mentioning the concerns they have with how little ministry actually pays. Now that's not to say that clergy families are demanding more income. In fact, they are often very hesitant to mention it as they are aware that ministry is entered as a God-given calling and asking for a higher salary feels contrary to following that calling.

14 November 2014

7 Things PKs Need From Their Pastor Parent

This blog is based on a great article written by Barnabas Piper. While he assumes that the dad in a clergy family is the pastor, not all clergy families are made this way. After a bit of a read, I've added my thoughts to his '7 Things PKs Need From Their Dad' article to make an Australian Top 7. For the original article, click here.

  1. A Parent, Not A Pastor: Bringing your work home is common for any people-based career. It's hard to leave them (and their problems) behind. By the time pastors come home, they have been problem-solving, listening, and doing enough admin to sink a battleship. All you want to do is get home and tune out for a while. And sometimes that's absolutely fine! But home also has your eager kids (and spouse!) waiting to share their lives with you; to play ball, show you their paintings, ask for your help with homework, or play a game. A simple argument but well put by Barnabas: 'Leave work and be present for your kids. Your children will spit on your pastoring if they miss out on your fathering (parenting).'

7 November 2014

The Marriage and the Ministry

As I have been assisting Rachel with research into what affects the life and health of clergy families, I have read many articles. Some very boring, some overly optimistic (in a terrified sort of way), some bitter, and some filled with hurt. Then there are some that are just all class. I’ve chosen to feature the article by Dr Paddy Ducklow about marriage and ministry depression because it has the most thorough understanding of clergy marriages and the way ministry can affect them that I’ve seen yet.

I don’t want to spend time re-writing his article, so here are a few quotes and my thoughts on some of the topics it covers:
  1. “Spiritualised Adultery” Yep, it got my attention as well. There is a trend among many spouses of ministers that they feel there is ‘another woman’ who is not a person at all, but the church their spouses spend hours listening to, caring for, and thinking of. Ducklow summarises it as “the pastor loving his work more than the domestic life” and discusses why this may happen and what the effects might be.