Dear Church Family,
The following was written by Gene Jorgenson, a retired Pastor of First Baptist Church, Marlow. Gene was a wonderful friend during my tenure at Central Baptist Church, Marlow. I came across this as I cleaned out my church office and wanted to share it with you.
HOW WE CAN HELP OUR NEW PASTOR
- Don’t share complaints on Sunday, Wednesday night, Revivals, etc. Do this during office hours.
- Write down prayer requests and other information (especially on Sunday) instead of just telling him. He can’t remember all of it every time. During the week, call the secretary.
- For several months after a new pastor arrives, tell him your name when you meet. Don’t get bent out of shape when he fails to remember it, or if he calls you by the wrong name.
- Check regularly on his wife and family when he is a away. Offer your assistance.
- Make sure the pastor’s wife is personally included when you invite him to socials, activities, or meals. Don’t expect him to tell her. Take the time to call her personally.
- Have them into your home regularly for fellowship. Not necessarily for a meal. Just coffee/tea and cookies is fine. This does more to develop “church family” than nearly anything.
- Always call him, his wife, or the church office when you have an illness or prayer need in your family. Don’t depend on him “finding out”. Do the same when you learn of any illness or need in the church family.
- Don’t expect him to preach like your “favorite” preacher. Pray for and encourage him to preach as God has gifted him to preach.
- Give him time to study. He has about 100 sermons and 50 Bible studies to prepare each year. That usually takes about five hours of study time each day.
- Allow him to make some mistakes. All of us make them and we should afford him the same privilege we take for ourselves. A congregation can “make or break” a pastor (especially a new one).
- If you have a problem with him, go to him first…no sidewalk sessions, phone conversations with other members, etc.
- Encourage him to take some time off on a regular basis. Let him and his wife know that you want them to have a weekly family time.
- Don’t worship him, but hold him in respect. Pray for him and support him. Do not criticize him or the church in front of your children.
- Remember, he is not a hired hand. He isn’t paid to preach, visit, minister to the sick and bereaved, etc. He is called of God to do these things and the church is to provide him and his family a living so he can give full-time to doing them.
- Don’t turn him into a janitor (open up, lights on/out, lock-up) etc.
- Allow him to be the pastor of everyone. Don’t monopolize him or his time.
- Help him. Let him know often that you are available to help.
- If you are a church worker/leader, secure your own substitutes when you are away. Don’t ask him to do it.
- Be his friend. Defend him…even after the honeymoon is over.
- Be a faithful, dedicated, working church member who is willing to get in the trenches for Jesus and His church.