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Preventing Early Exits from Ministry

What Are The Top Reasons Why Pastors Exit Early from Ministry?

  • Discouragement

  • Fear of Failure

  • Lack of Denominational Support

  • Differences in Church theology and leadership

  • Isolation and Loneliness

  • Lack of Vision

  • Personal Financial Pressures

  • Church Financial Pressures

  • Stress and Burnout

  • Feeling Unappreciated

  • Pressure to be Perfect

  • Family Stress

  • Health and Medical Issues

  • Integrity Issues and Moral Failure

  • Pride, Power and Control Issues

  • Loss of interest, motivation, joy and passion for ministry

  • Discouragement over the critics in the church

  • Discouragement over the direction of the church

How About You?


  • What type of pressures have you felt during your tenure in ministry?


  • Have you ever contemplated leaving your position or the ministry completely?


  • What has driven any fellow church leaders you may have known out of ministry?


  • What is your personal plan for self-care and protecting your heart from the “mistresses of ministry”?


Recommendations for Prevention: 


  • Establish boundaries that preserve your original goals and convictions


  • Establish boundaries that protect you from integrity failure


  • Maintain an active physical exercise, healthy eating and sleep schedule


  • Maintain an active level of connection and enjoyment of important relationships


  • Write out practical and achievable goals, both short term and long term.


  • Deepen your spiritual connection and growth


  • Offer yourself occasional “gentleness breaks” and “days of relaxation”


  • Don’t work in isolation.


  • Actively seek to have a mentor and professional support system.


Contact me if…


  • You would like to learn more about preventing an early exit from the ministry for you or others you care about


  • You would like for me to conduct a training in-service to your church leadership about the practical ways to prevent early exits from ministry


  • You would like to know about more resources available in regards to preventing early exits from the ministry


  • You have any questions or suggestions that are not covered in this section or the featured articles offered


  •  More than 1,700 pastors leave the ministry every month.
  • It is estimated that about 75% of all ministers live close to the poverty level.90% of the ministers report they feel inadequately trained to meet the demands of the ministry70% report having a lower self-image now than when they first started
  • 50% of the ministers will not even last 5 years!
  • 90% of ministers report working between 55 to 75 hours per week and most ministers do not exercise nor take regularly scheduled vacations.
  • 40% of the ministers report having serious conflict with a parishioner at least once a month

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