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How Much Does Your Wife Do?

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by USN2Pulpit, Feb 25, 2008.

  1. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit New Member

    Mar 19, 2003
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    1) Pastors, how much does your wife do at church?

    2) Is she responsible in programs - and do you wish she would do more or less?

    3) Does the church have expectations of her that are unreasonable?

    4) Do you feel that she suffers because of the emotional strain placed on her as a pastor's wife?
  2. rbell

    rbell Active Member

    Jan 16, 2006
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    1. She does all God leads her to do. Hopefully nothing more. (not trying to be trite...I mean that she is active in church, but balances that with the need to be a mom, have some time for her and family, and not try and do everyone's job at church).

    2. She's quite involved in our preschool ministry. It's relatively large (65 kids/workers in 2 services), so that's pretty much all there is for her.

    3. Nope. Best church I've ever served in that capacity.

    4. We did DiscipleNow this past week, and I worked 95 hours. (I'm off most of this week now). Perhaps this isn't the best time to ask! :laugh:
  3. annsni

    annsni Administrator

    May 30, 2006
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    Hmmm - I guess I'll answer as the wife. ;)

    We're in a bit of a different situation than many churches because we have 9 pastors and now 2 pastoral interns so that makes for a bunch of other pastor's wives. Each wife is in some sort of ministry as she's able (the mom of 6 younger children who homeschools is not able to do much whereas the moms of grown kids can do more) and each ministry is one that she was called by God to do - not called by the church. Personally, I have a new mom's group that I lead when it's needed (I'm about to start a new one in the next month or so), I do the computer work for the website and the stuff that goes on the projector (worship and sermon notes). I also run the kitchen for VBS each year (I feed 450 kids a snack each day and 150 workers coffee and food) and have done that for 10 years.

    I don't think any of the wives feel overwhelmed by their ministry because they're doing them in their giftings and they're called to do it. That makes a huge difference.

    So I know my situation is very different than that of a pastor and wife who are possibly the only paid staff at church (well, they get ONE salary). I think it's important for the congregation AND pastor to know that they do not get 2 for 1. If the wife is called to do the nursery or the women's ministry, then she'll be able to do it well and in God's strength. If she's EXPECTED to do it and it's not what God called her to do, she's going to burn out.
  4. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant Active Member

    Apr 13, 2006
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    Being a pastor's wife carries some baggage no matter what. God has blessed me with a wonderful wife who is the best pastor's wife I have ever known.

    My wife is doing less now than she has in the past because she needed some down time and because we now have developed capable, spiritual people who can lead the ministry she was involved in. She has been the lead person in several ministries during the time here but it was always with the eye towards developing leaders.

    Our church has been very good in not expecting her to be an unpaid staff member. We made it clear on coming here that she would be involved in a ministry just like other peple ought to be involved in a ministry. They understood that she worked full time so there would be times that she couldn't come to activities because of her work schedule.

    As to strain, she is under some. She lives in a fish bowl and she's the fish. But while there was a time the strain was close to unbearable because of people in the church, this is largely a thing of the past. Now it's just the normal garden variety strain.
  5. PilgrimPastor

    PilgrimPastor Member
    Site Supporter

    Dec 29, 2007
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    What a good question!

    1) At my first church my wife did much more than she should have been asked to. We had taken a smaller church in desperate need of revitalization. Though the church was over a century old it felt like a church plant.

    2) My wife did the all of the Sunday School program because none was in place when we arrived. She led the Christian Ed committee, created crafts and curriculum and was generally over tasked!

    3) Again, my first church had very unreasonable expectations on my wife. They wanted her absolute devotion but showed her very little appreciation. Some of the older church ladies were even rude and rather territorial in their behavior to her.

    4) My wife suffered very much as a part of this. It shows up in little ways at first when a church does not honor their Pastor's wife but if it is allowed to fester it gets worse and more noticeable.

    Often - for the sake of supposed unity in the congregation - we as Pastors are slow to see it and have a hard time understanding the toll that it takes on our spouses. In my case, the ladies of the church who were rude to my wife did not let me see their behavior first hand.

    Eventually though their behavior was too obvious to hide. It was a major part of my decision to leave the church in fact.

    My current church loves and honors my family and I am truly blessed to be their Pastor! www.1stperu.org

    My advice to young or new Pastors is the same advice my dear friend the Methodist Pastor near my first church gave to me after his wife died young and untimely in a car accident only a year and a half ago; "If I had it to do over the only thing I would change is ever having allowed some of the churches I served mistreat my wife. She was (is) the most important ministry that God has charged me with..."

    Put your wives first. I mean REALLY put them first. As a Pastor you have to recognize that while some people in the church genuinely love you and need your love for them; God has placed you first and foremost as the protector of your home!
  6. tinytim

    tinytim <img src =/tim2.jpg>

    Oct 31, 2003
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    Choir, and one of the leaders of the Prayer team.
    Plus my favorite cheerleader.

    Counsellor to the ladies.
  7. Major B

    Major B <img src=/6069.jpg>

    May 6, 2003
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    My wife is in poor health, so she attends, and that is it.