Monday Morning Insights

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    The Top Ten Reasons for You Could Get Fired Today…

    The Top Ten Reasons for You Could Get Fired Today…

    A recent study provides the top ten reasons that pastors get fired.  I know that many who read this blog have been fired for one reason or another over their ministry career.  And for those who haven't been fired personally, they probably have had a role in letting someone on their staff go.  Take a look at these reasons and see if they ring true for you personally...

    1. Control issues (who should run the church)

    2. Poor people skills

    3. Church's resistance to change

    4. Pastor's leadership style (too strong)

    5. Church was already conflicted when the pastor arrived

    6. Decline in attendance and/or conditions

    7. Pastor's leadership style (too weak)

    8. Administrative incompetence on the part of the pastor

    9. Sexual misconduct

    10. Conflict with other staff

    Does this sound about right?  Have you been fired?  Was it for one of these reasons?  Have you had to fire someone?  Why?

    Leave a comment... I'd love to hear from you!


    PS -- There are a few more reasons you could get fired here...


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    1. bishopdave on Mon, June 28, 2010

      Wasn’t fired, but they threatened to because of people skills. After venting how unfair they were, I had to admit they were right. That was 18 years ago, I actually spent about 5 years reading and working on nothing but that kind of thing. Firing or threatend to be fired can be an opportunity for growth.

    2. Rob on Tue, June 29, 2010

      wow bishopdave, that was well put.  maybe if more pastors were that humble their possibility of being fired could diminish significantly.  I currently know a pastor that could be accused of #’‘s 2, 4 and 6.  What’s sad about it is that he’s too proud to listen to anyone.  I like what mark driscol and rick warren say about our critics.  they say we should turn them into coaches.  if 1 person has something negative about me it might be a lie, but if several people are saying it - it might be true.

    3. Peter Hamm on Tue, June 29, 2010

      If people tell you you have shortcomings… you do…

      I’ve learned that, too. But I haven’t been fired… But it’s only tuesday…

    4. Pastor Andi Wittwer on Tue, June 29, 2010

      Pray, Preach, Pastor; other than they all start with P it is important to me to keep these in order. Prayer will keep our preaching (teaching) and pastoring in good shape. I don’t worry about whether people like me if I am focussed on the Holy Spirit. The whole world is my church, those in God’s Sanctuary are those who ask me to stay for right now.

    5. rob on Tue, June 29, 2010

      Pastor Andi, would you like to rephrase your statement?

      You said - “The whole world is my church, those in God�s Sanctuary are those who ask me to stay for right now”.

      2 things here - As Pastor’s we serve in “God’s Church”, not “our church” and I don’t think I’d say the whole world is “God’s Church”.  There is a distinction between the church and those outside of fellowship with Christ. (just saying)

      And Peter, shortcomings aren’t a problem, we all have them.  However, when we deny them and aren’t willing to work on them I think we make room for the possibility of being fired.  Any employee in any organization faces this fact if they’re not willing to change (or at the very least attempt to change).

    6. Fred on Tue, June 29, 2010

      Hooray for Bishop Dave! You won’t find many pastor’s like that!

    7. Dennis Rogers on Tue, June 29, 2010

      I have seen many pastors get fired, most because the members wanted a social club and the pastor wanted God’s church.  Sad, but I fear I am about to see it again in the weeks to come.

    8. Fred on Thu, July 01, 2010

      I’ve seen some pastors who needed to be fired but weren’t because they ran the church and there was no accountability. Please realize that in some independent charismatic churches the pastor cannot be fired.

    9. Peter Hamm on Thu, July 01, 2010

      Fred, that is always a bad situation. I’d never serve or work in a church where the senior pastor is technically un-fire-able.

    10. Rob on Thu, July 01, 2010

      with my fellowship - that’s almost always the case - the SP is technically unfireable.  i think every good church needs to set up fair systems and policies for pastoral accountability.  beyond that, many SP’s hire within their family for other positions and they also become unfireable. 

      It’s like little family owned churches.

    11. Vern Sanders on Thu, July 01, 2010

      I spoke on this issue at a conference a couple of years ago, and took an informal survey of the 600 or so people in the room:
      Raise your hand if you’ve been fired: = +/-30%
      (keep your hand up)
      Raise your hand if you’ve left because you knew if you didn’t you would be fired: total = +/- 80%
      In any gathering of 4 church leaders, only one will not have been fired, or in a position to be fired.
      If you know that statistic, being fired may not be as scary, because if you do ministry while always being afraid to be fired, your ministry may end up being luke-warm…

    12. rob on Sat, July 03, 2010

      My Dad always told me…“as long as you do your job, you don’t have to worry about being fired” and he’s right.  He worked the same job for over 30 years.  I’m sure he had times he wanted to quit, I’m sure there were times people got on his nerves but he stayed true and retired with honor. 

      Pastor, if you fear getting fired - get on track.  Preach the word (not your interpretation of it but exegete it well), love God and love people.  If you still get fired, just know that God just needs you somewhere else.

    13. Peter Hamm on Sat, July 03, 2010

      Rob, sometimes it’s that simple.

      Often it is not.

    14. rob on Mon, July 05, 2010

      Peter, I appreciate your comment.  However, our faith and trust must be in God.  It’s HIS church.  Being fired isn’t something we need to fear if we’re being faithful.  If we’re working out our duties in such a way as to not get fired, then we’re simply failing in our ministry and probably should be fired.  If Moses led his people that way they’d probably still be slaves in Egypt or wandering some desert.

      Can we be fired while being faithful?  Perhaps, after all Moses almost did.  Nevertheless our loyalty is first to God, then his people.  If I were fired from a church where I knew I was being faithful, I’d leave with my head held high knowing that God has a new assignment for me.

    15. Jonathan on Tue, July 06, 2010

      concerning ‘family owned’ churches.  Just curious…I know the detrimates of it for sure…but there is plenty of scriptural evidence for families working together in ministry.

      While I agree, and understand more than most, about the downsides…I don’t think that families working together in ministry is always a negative thing.

      Would love to hear more on this subject from those of you who have been doing this longer than me.

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