5 Stages of Pastoral Tenure

October 18, 2013
Rainer on Leadership Podcast Logo

Podcast Episode #027

For more than two decades I have studied, contemplated, and written about the tenure of a pastor. Why is pastoral tenure relatively brief on the average? Does that tenure contain common and distinct stages? Is there a particular point in the tenure when more pastors leave the church?
The more I study the phenomenon of pastoral tenure, the more I am convinced there are distinct stages with clear characteristics. Certainly I understand that there are numbers of exceptions to my delineations. I am also fully aware that the years I designate for each stage are not precise.

  • Year One: The Honeymoon
  • Years Two and Three: Conflicts and Challenges
  • Years Four and Five: Crossroads (part one)
  • Years Six through Ten: Fruit and Harvest
  • Year 11 and Beyond: Crossroads (part two)

In this episode we address these stages of tenure and how best to lead through them.

Listener Question

Will asks: If a church votes to vacate the pulpit and miss the required amount of 2/3rds but receive the majority should the pastor resign?

Episode Sponsor

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