Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Long term pastors and vision

This is a post that I first published on this blog five years ago that I felt deserved to be repeated for my newer readers.  It points out the value of long-term pastorates.  I would be interested in hearing your reponses to the questions at the end.

I am currently reading The Hidden Lives of Congregations written by Israel Galindo. He writes, "Pastors cannot even begin to formulate a vision until well into their fifth year of ministry at the church...Until a pastor has been at a congregation for at least five years, he or she does not know the congregation well enough to shape a vision."

I was the bivocational pastor of my church for seven years before I was able to lead the church in some new directions. Based on my experience and research by George Barna that shows the most effective years of a pastor's ministry doesn't occur until at least the third year, I believe Galindo is right. What has been your experience? How long did you serve at your church before the congregation recognized your leadership and begin to allow you to cast a vision for the church's ministry?

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