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New Study Shows Pastors Are Hanging On By a Thread; and It’s Our Fault

April 29, 2022

A new study by Barna has revealed that pastors, regardless of denomination, location, or church size, are becoming more and more negatively impacted by the job, and the number that are wanting to quit is slowly rising. To put it plainly, nearly HALF of all current pastors have seriously considered quitting at some point in the last year.

When asked, as of March 2022, that number of those considering quitting stands at 42% compared to 29% in January 2021

However, the reason they want to quit tends to vary, or be a conglomeration of many different factors that depend on individual churches and their needs, but the #1 reason that most want to quit: The immense stress of the job.

Being a pastor is way more stressful than anyone can imagine. Even if you have a fully supportive, loving church, a pastor is needed in ways that are unexpected, stressful, and many times, last-minute. This can take a toll on their personal lives, marriages, friendships, and overall mental health.

The other top reasons for wanting to quit are: Feeling lonely/isolated, current political divisions, and being unhappy with the effect on their family.

The sad truth of seeing these results is that the one thing that can make a difference in your pastor staying or leaving, feeling stressed or loving his job…is you.

Yes, you.

I don’t care who you are, or how big of a part you play in your church, how to treat your pastor is going to make a world of different not just for them, but for your church as a whole.

Just look at the top reasons: feeling lonely, political divisions, the effect it has on their family; it’s all ways that we as a church body treat our pastors. This study says more to be about the state of people within the church than it does to the pastors.

Whoever you are reading this, I challenge you, right now, to do something kind and encouraging to your pastor. It could be something as small as sending them a text that you appreciate them, it could be as big as bringing them a meal, or anything in between.

Most people don’t think to encourage or compliment their pastors because they assume they “have it all together”. Well, here’s the proof above, they may not. Love them better than you’ve loved them before.

One who is taught the word must share all good things with the one who teaches.

Galatians 6:6

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