“Real” Reasons We Pay the Pastor…

Usher: Deak, I’m not much for payin’ pastors, but lots of today’s nuclear families are. 

Deacon: Most people think a pastor is worth his wage.  What’s your point?

Usher: Well, here are some of the real reasons we pay the pastor….

  • To buy the matzas for communion – because we don’t know which brand to buy
  • To put up with Margaret the secretary who’s there because the last pastor wrote her into the bylaws
  • Visiting “Vinny” in the hospital – we don’t know Vinny and going to the hospital smells!
  • To run the business meetings – what a waste of time – I’ll never go to one of those again!
  • To deal with Mikey the youth pastor who botched his college career and has no other way to make $$
  • To be the arbitrator between the “hymn lovers” and the “boomers” who prefer contemporary worship
  • To manage those A-personality girls who run the VBS every year – oh they are so annoying
  • To counsel Fred the “want-to-be elder” who cannot seem to ever pass up a request for prayer or a recommitment of his faith
  • To field the complaints of the blue-hairs on “what’s for Wednesday night dinner”
  • To attend the Wednesday night dinners
  • To hire all the “yes” men for the deacon board
  • To attend the leadership meetings and settle all the trivial arguments amongst the “yes” men
  • To have dinner with all the visiting missionaries – especially the translators – who can relate?
  • To counsel all the troubled wives – note we said wives – cause their husbands never come
  • To approve the worship list and settle the disputes between worship leaders
  • To read the announcements for the same 12 people who care about the announcements
  • Last but not least – to prepare the sermons I can never recall and to pray for the same 10 people who request it every week

Deacon: Your view is slightly cynical, Usher.

Usher: If you’re readin’ this, let us know what your pastor gets paid for?????


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

15 Responses to ““Real” Reasons We Pay the Pastor…”

  1. Mark Says:

    Most pastors get paid to be the witness those in their pews don’t want to be.

  2. Mark R Says:

    Yeah … I’m with Mark – we pay em so we don’t have to do the work. And we’ve also got them on a piece of string.

  3. Heather Says:

    I think that we pay them, because that’s how it’s been since we can remember. I also think we pay pastors because we hear sermon’s that encourage and some manipulate their attenders into tithing (or guilt tripping is probably a better phrase). I’ve met a few pastors that claim it as their right to receive $ for what they do; however now that I understand I see that it essentially is the “system” per say that encourages and in fact feeds off of this minor point in the big picture. In the “Institutional/Conventional/Traditional Church” you have a hierachy. There’s the Pastor (head Pastor) there’s associate pastors, theirs the BOARD (president, secretary, treasurer) there are the Deacon’s and the Elder’s who get to participate in these board meetings and then there are the attenders, better known as the Lay people.

    Anyway, everyone in the tier (hierachy) is dependant on the Lay people’s contributions, monthly to pay their mortgages, their car payments, their health insurance, their secretary, for lunches for the board meetings and for a little bit of outreach. We or the lay people, the frequent attenders….feel like we’re NOT doing what the Pastor is doing, we’re not as EDUCATED as the Pastor, and we feel more guilty because essentially we come in on Sunday’s and/or maybe Wednesdays for bible study. We’re not DOING what the Pastor is doing, so why shouldn’t he earn a salary? Isn’t that how I contribute to the BODY, by giving money so that the Pastor can go out and save people. So that we have a place to bring the LOST people? I’m rambling a little, but bear with me..

    When I (we – my husband and I) get into or have previously gotten into discusssions w/paid pastors, there usually is a huge defense when this topic imparticular is brought up. Especially, since I’m not a “pastor” or ordained anyway, or educated by a bible college…I just read the word and have been made new and have a relationship w/Jesus….so typically there’s a little head butting in the realm of…(how can you talk to me like a person, I’m a pastor) elevated in a lot of ways…anyway the response is typically…I couldn’t possibly work full time to support myself and my family and be available for the people.

    This is however untrue, my question(s) for paid pastors are as follows: “Why & what do you have to make yourselves available for during the day, when most people go to work full-time ?” Isn’t being a pastor a love for God’s people, not a paycheck? Wouldn’t you be a pastor even if you didn’t receive money? What about the preisthood of all believers? How can you relate to the everyday worker (99% of the population) when you don’t work during the day? You don’t know what it’s like to have a wordly boss, to work amongst those that are lost, etc. etc.?

    Anyway, I think we pay pastors because we don’t want to actually read scripture for ourselves, we don’t actually want to get our own hands dirty, we don’t actually want to ask tough questions about what scripture says, we’re lazy, we’re bloated and we’re guilt ridden.

    Just so start, I’ve already rambled enough on your blog so for now I’ll end here. Peace & Love in HIM ~ Heather

  4. Heather Says:

    Here’s a similar conversation in a different light:



  5. Vanity of Vanities! Says:

    What would you rather? Wandering, homeless missionaries? (That came out sounding sarcastic, but I didn’t mean it that way. Just curious about your idea of the alternative.)

  6. Deacon Says:

    Usher: Hey Deak, you got a response for Vanity of Vanities?

    Deacon: Once again Usher, the overall understanding of missionaries is that they are weak, needy dependent and obliged to come back to their church with their hat in hand begging for support.

    Usher: Isn’t that what missionaries are to most churches?

    Deacon: To most churches – that is exactly what the churches have made the missionaries out to be. Because mission funds are just another program and the church simply does it because they’ve been told that that’s the right thing to do. Missionaries are almost never a priority especially with the pastor. If they were, the pastor would have to give up more of his money. But today’s church has made them such a minority in the areas of finance, that they are supported separate from the church tithe with special offerings. As you and I are not supporters of the 10% tithe, then one might ask, where would support dollars come from to support the missionaries? From the congregation of course!

    Usher: I get it. The congregation has no part in interacting with the missionaries, or getting their hands dirty. The pastor either hoards all the time with the missionary family or simply defaults to it because the congregation has no interest or simply doesn’t validate the role of the missionary other than coming back to the church to beg for money every so often! Wow, if the pastors only knew that by not making the congregation aware of the true roles of the missionary, they end up simply throwing all of the onus back onto him! And now he’s simply a jack-of-all-ministries and master-of-none!

    Deacon: If one were to rebuild this thinking, they would simply do away with the tithe, spend time getting to know the missionaries in their body, work towards contributing to the cause of the missionary, send the pastor out to tent-making school and the church would once again flourish. A church could actually further the kingdom by supporting missionaries who are out making disciples instead of lame marketing schemes carried out by the modern church that don’t have a chance other than to grow programs.

    Usher: Ain’t gonna happen! Man won’t change until God brings about disaster and takes away all the chocolates! We need another Egypt or fall of Rome or something to wake the church up. Till then, they’ll simply sit around and debate.

    Deacon: Kind of like what we’re doing?

    Usher: Hey, if one set of ears hears it and makes a true change in their way of thinking – we could have a revolution! And missionaries would be seen as warriors instead of pitiful little beggars as we have made them out to be.

  7. Vanity of Vanities! Says:

    So who would be the church’s practical, visible leader and teacher?

  8. Deacon Says:

    Usher: the body of course – read the book Pagan Christianity? and learn more about the church than you ever knew. You have been indoctrinated with custom, tradition, pomp and circumstance. This is not to knock the church, just to show you why you have been mistaught and misled.

  9. Alan Paul Says:

    How would you square your view with Acts – where leaders seem to have been appointed for the fledgling church… you know, so the apostles (more leaders) could devote themselves to prayer and preaching of the word?

  10. Deacon Says:

    Usher: You stated the key term in your comment “preaching of the word”. This was in the context of the great commission and the move of God in that time and place. People were coming to God in droves and there needed to be leaders to help in discipling them. We all need leaders – paid leaders, no.. We pay leaders today to do the things we won’t do because we’re too lazy. Even in the early days of America, no one wanted to be a leader because it was extra work. They had to do their day job and then had to meet with other leaders to deal with country or local issues. These typically were not paid positions. This is where term limits came from – they were for relief, not comfort the way our fat politicians treat them today. The rich infiltrated this system because the working man didn’t want the extra work with little to no pay. This left the door wide open for wealthy people to assume the power, influence laws and get us into the wonderful place we’re in today (across the world I might add). Many pastors act just like politicians in building their little fiefdoms. It’s a lot safer than trying to run a company as a CEO. There is virtually no accountability, because we as laypeople don’t hold them accountable! They justify their behavior because the fat lazy parishioners enjoy the entertainment and the false confirmations they get from the leadership that the “church” is carrying out the work of the kingdom while you simply put money in the offering plate. Sad and pitiful! The work of a pastor seeking to carry out the word is not one of honor or glory and prestige (find me a scripture for that one). It’s one of service, hardship, sweat and loneliness. It’s the true heart of a missionary seeking to make disciples. (Many have never met a true one, I know several.) Tell me you are a disciple and the church has made you a proud disciple? I’d like to see a church that operates like this today. Trust me, the membership is very very small and the work is large and their is little to no pay going into the pastor’s mortgage or retirement plan.

    Deacon: Once again, if you take any instance out of context, in this case Acts, you can substantiate any argument you choose. This is not personal to your comment – it’s just the way nearly all churches take the scriptures out of context and preach the word to substantiate the modern church way of thinking.

    Usher: Did you know that Isaac smoked? “When he saw Rebeccah, he lit off his camel”.

    Deacon: Usher, shut up!

  11. Alan Paul Says:

    I honestly wasn’t trying to take anything out of context – I was just wondering how your views fit in with the beginnings of the church and their need for leaders and the structure of the church. I have almost as many problems with the church as you both do – though I don’t have nearly the problems with pastors getting paid and getting paid well. I am of the free market persuasion – even when it comes to the church. To say a servant of the church must toil in poverty and destitution is simply not scriptural in my opinion. Christ didn’t teach us to stay away from money – He taught us to regard it with caution and to not create an idol out of it.

    My view is that money is not the problem, it’s a crisis of belief which means a crisis of the heart. I am not even really sure how to explain that other than to say we don’t really seem to believe there is a God powerful enough to overcome what we face as individuals and as the church body. We REALLY want to KNOW we are safe, so we do all kinds of things to assure that safety. So we put our confidence in money, power, position, programs, initiatives, etc. and that is where we get into trouble. And then the trouble compounds itself as we continue in our unbelief. And then we wonder why our faith is so dead and God seems so far away. Sin drives the Spirit away and of course, unbelief is sin…

    Speaking of making money and working in a ministry – I have to get back to both instead of rambling…

  12. Vanity of Vanities! Says:

    You’re actually assuming quite a lot about me that you do not know. I don’t need to look to a modern book to see God’s purpose for his Church. I need rather to look to the Word of God and let that guide my thoughts and beliefs. In the Word, God repeatedly raised up leader after leader to shepherd the flock. Those leaders quite often were supported by God’s people. That’s not a man-made idea. Any time the people did whatever they thought was best (the Body being their own leader), things got really bad. The Israelites of the Old Testament illustrate the story.

    I’m not saying that everything the modern church does is Biblical, ethical, or noteworthy. I’m saying that God has always been in the practice of raising up earthly leaders and having the people take care of them. That can be in house churches or in church buildings. Just because a body of believers constructs a church building and puts a full-time pastor in it doesn’t mean that they’re suddenly worshiping pagan gods.

  13. Beloved Mama Says:

    to build things…buildings, coffee houses, programs…

    for Christians

  14. Beloved Mama Says:

    in the days of the early church, people gathered, everyone gave, and everything was shared as there was need…

    We are all called to minister- not just the pastors-
    We all have needs-
    We all need to be going out into the world-
    forget the buildings, programs, coffee houses-
    go to where there are hurting and afflicted non believers
    Let’s try to be their friend, no agenda…
    Is that possible?

  15. Deacon Says:

    Usher: Hey Deak, these people seem to be on the same branch as us. I thought Christians all wanted pretty little (or big mega) churches with massive productions of entertainment and strong (bully) leaders to show them the way?

    Deacon: Usher, don’t fuel the fire. They’re trying the best they can to keep their witness in spite of their “pastor’s” behavior.

    Usher: Why don’t these people simply walk away? Pastor has no power without a congregation. She wouldn’t have any power without a choir.

    Deacon: What do you think she will say when Jesus asks for her contribution to discipling others? “Lord, I built the most famous and prettiest choir ever to be assembled. People come from all around to hear the pretty music about you.”

    Usher: I’m not going to give that answer – I’m in a tree and if lighting hits, I’ll have hot feet!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: