Bivocational Pastor needs help

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by GodsRealTruth, Jan 11, 2007.

  1. GodsRealTruth

    GodsRealTruth
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    Hey Guys and Ladies,

    I am in quite a pickle. Here is the story and you tell me what I should do. I work and Pastor a church. On Monday I got a call from a elderly lady in my congregation asking if I could take her to a funeral on Friday. Well I got with my work on Tuesday and asked if I could get Friday off. Originally, my work did not think it would be a problem. They claim they never approved it and I evidently took it as it was approved. Now I come in today and they told me I could not get that day off. However, I have gave my word to this elderly lady that I would take her to the funeral as she has no one else to take her.

    I have always stated being a bivo pastor does not work. It will always lead to you letting someone down no matter where you turn. My work has told me if I miss friday then they will do what they have to do.

    What should I do? I let them know my loyality lies with the church first and foremost....
     
  2. annsni

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    Is there another member of your congregation who can take her? Your wife, maybe? I can't imagine how hard it is to work AND pastor a church - pastoring a church is a 24/7 job in and of itself!!

    Ann
     
  3. Gershom

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    If you have told your employer that church is first and foremost, then you should not compromise that.
     
  4. Rufus_1611

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    Just one person's view based on limited info but...You have a lamb that is in need of assistance and if you are the leader of that lamb, then she is your priority. An organization that is concerned more with profit then a grandmother's attendance at a funeral has a pretty wicked worldview, particularly if you already had the time off approved. However, you know your situation best so God be with you in whatever path you choose.
     
  5. Marcia

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    At the same time, by being hired, you have implicitly agreed to follow their rules and work for them. So you may have to take the consequences they dole out (being fired?) if you leave work and can't find someone else to take this lady.

    I think this pickle is inevitable with your situation and Lord willng, you can find a job with more flexibility that would allow you to take time off when you need to.
     
  6. James_Newman

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    I pray that God will open the door for you to devote yourself to fulltime ministry.
     
  7. Gershom

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    Or, as the OP implied, the pastor let the employer know that his church comes first. If he goes back on his word, what's next?

    In any event, his calling is to pastor and I would hope that he would keep his word and take the lady to the funeral, and keep his word to his employer that the church comes first.

    I pray that it all works out for both parties.
     
  8. blackbird

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    Its not a sin to be bivocational!!! After 19 years of full time pastorate I am moving into that very ministry.

    You are not the only boat in the water----ring up your deacons--get your wife to call a deacon's wife and the two of them take the elderly lady to the funeral and then afterward make sure the two ladies buy lunch for the elderly lady.

    Personally----I would not "haggle" with your secular employer---you just may need to take off some other time----for something far more important than taking that lady to a funeral.
     
    #8 blackbird, Jan 11, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 11, 2007
  9. Plain Old Bill

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    I don't know what the market base is where you are.Your employer is testing you and is willing to make you pay. That is often the case with bi-vo pastors.

    If you have a fairly decent population base go into business for yourself so you will have flexibility. Real estate or insurance sales provides a good living if you put the work in.I have known several people who have "Watkins" routes they have developed and they do quite nicely.That only costs about $50 to get started and you can get hooked up on the net.

    :godisgood:
     
  10. JamieinNH

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    I am sorry I can't give you any advice on this situation, but from reading this over, I think Blackbird's post is great advice.

    There has to be a deacon, or a member of the church that can help.

    I will pray for a solution, and also, if the Lord wills, for a full time ministry to present itself to you.

    Jamie
     
  11. Jim1999

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    First off, when did the pastor become a taxi service? Sorry, I do not transport people. I am sure there is someone else to trasnport this lady to a funeral.

    If one is going that way, yes, one could offer a ride. I am sure others will be attending this funeral, and even the funeral home could provide transportation.

    You equally have a my-word commitment to your employer. IN these cases the church extras become secondary, in my opinion.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  12. exscentric

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    "his calling is to pastor"

    Nope, think if he is a bi-voc pastor that is what he is called to - both - unless he isn't walking with the Lord and I'd doubt that :tongue3: . If there is no one in the church that can sub, then explain to the lady the situtation and see if she doesn't understand completely.
     
  13. StefanM

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    While you have an obligation to your church, if you have a family, your first obligation is to provide for it.

    I'd follow Blackbird's advice. If you go to the funeral, it's likely that you will be fired.

    IMO, the best course of action would be to try to find someone else, letting the woman know that something came up at work and prevented you from taking her.
     
  14. PastorSBC1303

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    Great advice.

    I have a great deal of respect for bivocational pastors. Some of the most godly men I have known in ministry have been bivocational pastors. I pray that God blesses you greatly in both your church and your secular employment.
     
  15. dh1948

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    Imho

    Your family should come first, not your church. Since supporting your family requires that you have a job, and since you already have a job, choose to keep your job for the sake of your family.

    Churches with bivocational pastors need to realize that the pastor can not respond to every need its members have.
     
  16. Pastor J

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    Something more important than one of your members going to a funeral? Something more important than keeping your word to one of your members?

    I was bi-vo for 10 years. I had a similar situation. I told my company that I would not be in and if they felt the need to fire me, then so be it. There would be no hard feelings, but I would keep my word to my church member. My boss who did not like me tried to fire me, but could not because HR said that she had no cause. She could only give me a written warning. Not that your company can't fire you, but the right thing to do is keep your word.
     
  17. StefanM

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    Yes. Feeding your family.
     
  18. Pastor J

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    Quit the ministry and get work full time then. If your word is worthless then you have no ministry in the first place
     
  19. rbell

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    I can't imagine that there's not someone in the church who can minister to this dear lady.

    That's our job anyway...to equip. Time for the folks to help their pastor out, and minister to a lady who needs it.

    That takes the "either-or" out of this equation.

    God's best to you. Been bi-vo before...rewarding but boy howdy, a tough row to hoe...
     
  20. StefanM

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    False dilemma. There is no need to quit the ministry over this. The man was not lying to the woman. Since he thought his work had cleared him for the day, he agreed. The situation changed.

    There is nothing wrong with explaining the situation to the woman and working hard to find someone else in the church to help out.
     

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