By Andy Hale
The life of a minister can be isolating and lonely.
Most ministers know that they need to find a healthy community of peers to support them, yet finding a consistent, vibrant and authentic community among other ministers can sometimes be challenging. Often peer learning groups require traveling great distances, and time off is sparse. And, let’s just be honest, relational vulnerability can be unnerving.
With all these things to consider, all ministers need to find a healthy support system.
These types of spaces and relationships help ministers take intentional steps to focus on specific goals, harness their strengths, process and handle conflict maturely and better understand their limitations. Though challenging, these experiences help embolden and elevate the minister.
CBF’s New Church Starts Initiative exists to facilitate healthy support systems for church starters.
A new facet to our initiative is semi-monthly online video conversations. These video conversations exist for our church starters to talk with other church starters, share best practices, learn from each other and provide a consistent space for harnessing community.
The conversations are structured around a specific topic presented by a CBF church starter, followed by a conversation around the topic and ending with a time of open dialogue.
Our next conversation will be Monday, February 15 at 8:30pm EST. The focus will be Navigating Bi-Professional Ministry.
Let’s say we wrote an honest and comprehensive job description of a pastor. This could include the roles of facility manager, CEO, mentor, human resource officer, counselor, consultant, public speaker, philosopher, mediator, resident theologian, coach, activities director, servant, volunteer coordinator, a 24/7 available agent of the church, janitor, handyman, trip planner, social worker, sound technician, writer, editor, publisher, babysitter, scapegoat, punching bag, messiah when you agree with him/her, the evil one when you disagree with her/him and travel agent.
Church starters add another hat of part-time or full-time work outside of the church. So how do you navigate these challenges?
This conversation will be led by Merianna Harrelson, pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Fellowship, and George Linney, CBF church starter of Tobacco Trail Church.
If you would like to participate in the February 15 conversation at 8:30pm EST, email Andy by Friday, February 12. The call will be limited to 25 participants.
We will be using Zoom, which allows participants to access the conversation via phone call or video call on tablets, smart phones or computers.
The next conversation will take place April 11, centering on Creating Space for Theological Diversity and Accountability.
We look forward to this new journey with you.
Andy Hale leads CBF’s Church Starts Initiative and is a CBF church starter serving as pastor of Mosaic of Clayton in Clayton, N.C. For those who wish to learn more about CBF’s Church Starts Initiative click here, or contact Andy Hale at firstname.lastname@example.org.