Poor Pastors - Literally?
Pastors and money—it’s not a subject you hear a lot about. But the July/August 2016 Christianity Today noted a survey from the National Association of Evangelicals on Pastors and their money. Here are some of the interesting findings:
29% had no money in personal savings
33% had less than $10,000 in retirement
92% worry about their retirement savings
84% worry about their emergency funds
83% worry about making major purchases
54% worry about being able to send their children to college
On a more positive front, 61% were mostly satisfied with their compensation with 45% feeling that their financial position was better than their peers. Notwithstanding these positive notes, 36% of pastors considered leaving the ministry altogether for financial reasons.
This survey raises some troubling questions. Consider:
Do we believe that it’s okay for our pastors to live on lower salaries simply because they are in ministry?
Do we believe that it would be proper for a pastor to earn the same or similar salary as a business person running an organization with the appropriate people and business challenges?
What is the impact upon congregations when a pastor worries about money, retirement, college etc?
Should anything be changed?
I’ll be interested to hear your comments.