My Fellow Pastors I need your opinion

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by GodsRealTruth, Jun 13, 2009.

  1. GodsRealTruth

    GodsRealTruth
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    I wanted to ask my fellow pastors on the board their take on something. Do you guys charge to do weddings, funerals, and counseling? I was just wondering because I have performed numerous weddings and funerals for church members and family members of church members and I never get paid...:tear:

    What is your take? Is it ok if I charge people for these services that I perform? or should it considered apart of the ministry? :thumbsup:

    Just wondering...
     
  2. Revmitchell

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    I never ask for money. The church charges a deposit for clean up in case they do not. And a charge is accrued for non members to cover utilities.

    If compensation is offered neither do I turn it down.
     
  3. GodsRealTruth

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    Any of the activities that were at the church they never offered to do any of that.

    Plus most of the weddings and funerals I have done were all away from the church I pastor at. So most of time I am driving a good ways to get there...
     
  4. Tom Bryant

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    This may sound like I am not answering the question, but I will.

    I never set a charge down except concerning the charge for using the bldgs, which only applies to non-members, although I do tell members that if they wanted to give something to the janitors for the extra work they will do it would be appreciated. Then I remind them that the organist and if they have a soloist, they ought to get a gift for the work she wll do at the rehearsal and the service.

    Almost inevitably this leads to the question about a gift for me. I say that I do not charge, but if they wanted to give a gift that would be acceptable. When they ask how much, I say to the man, "Whatever she is worth to you." :tongue3:

    By the way, for non-attenders (which I rarely do and almost never for unsaved non-attenders), we have a specific cost list that covers the use of the building and my own services. But for members, there is no cost list.

    For funerals, the funeral home will usually say something to them about a gift for the pastor. I have never charged for counseling.
     
    #4 Tom Bryant, Jun 13, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 13, 2009
  5. RevGKG

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    I don't set a fee. To me it is a ministry (especially a funeral) , but if they offer I don't turn it down.:tongue3: Also I do not charge for counseling.
     
  6. TomVols

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    I have never charged for counseling a member or a person connected with a wedding/funeral. I'd imagine some states would have some legalities with it.

    I don't charge for weddings or funerals because of a personal conviction and experience. Remember to report any gifts/money you get for these as income on your schedule C and SE.
     
  7. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
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    While I almost always get something, I do not require it, nor do I expect it. When it is given to me, I offer to give it back saying "That's unnecessary." The church is paying me to pastor, and these things are part of pastoring.
     
  8. rbell

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    Me too...especially Larry's last line.

    The awkward question is when a party asks me, "What do you normally get paid?" I give a variation of PL's answer.

    Our church charges its members for use of its facilities for a wedding...but it's because we now hire a person to do setup & takedown. We were having too many problems with stuff not being put back. We don't offer our building for non-members. (Last year, we had 30+ weddings).

    When I get paid for a wedding/funeral, I just play it by ear as to who paid me. If it's a person who's well off, or if I know they'd be offended if I tried to return the $$, then fine. But otherwise, I often times give it back.
     
  9. sag38

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    Weddings require being away from the family on Friday night and on Saturday (Days I don't normally work unless there is an emergency and a wedding is not an emergency.) And, while I don't charge I'm not opposed to being compensated.
     
  10. tinytim

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    Around here, if they consider you an "outsider" they pay you.

    If they have accepted you as one of them, they feel you are "family" and don't get paid...

    so... Either way you look at it, there is a good side...

    But I am definately going to remember this:
     
  11. tank1976

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    I do charge for weddings. They can be more difficult to deal with than funerals. For funerals I just let the FH take care of that part.

    I pastor at a Developmental Center on the weekends and do some other fill-in preaching.
     
  12. preachinjesus

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    I don't charge for any of these...for members specifically. Most funerals I do are for church members and I don't feel comfortable charging even for non-members. (Just my take and not at all dogmatic) These people are going through enough and (usually) are getting taken to the cleaners through this process. (There is a booming industry in funeral homes) I just want to have the freedom to perform a truly Christian ceremony that is Gospel oriented.

    As for weddings. I don't charge but have let my assistant and our wedding coordinator know to mention that it is appropriate to offer an honorarium if they see fit. If I do the counseling and wedding part of our covenant agreement includes their decision to consider an honorarium, but its not required.

    Our facilities require a cleaning and damage deposit that varies on size and which venue you choose to use regardless of member/non-member. This was important for us because way too members were leaving messes and damages. We also ask for a minimal charge for cleaning based on size and venue.

    As for counseling I don't usually charge. Its part of my ministry. Especially for non-member people/couples I don't mention it and dismiss it. I will quickly evaluate in our first two meetings how deep we are going to get. If the issues are deeper than I can reasonably handle I will recommend them to a certified Christian counselor in our area and help them set up the appointment. (We also keep some funds on hand to help disadvantaged families pay for this.)

    Again this is how I do it and I'm not dogmatic about it. I have a friend who is bi-vocational and he charges for funerals and weddings but doesn't for counseling through their first three appointments.

    Hope it helps.
     

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