Why are so many pastors discouraged and leaving the ministry? Why are many burning out and struggling in their marriages? One major reason is that pastors do not have a safe environment in which they can open up and express their hurt and difficulties. Another is they are giving without receiving, trying to disciple and mentor others when they’re not experiencing the same for themselves. Not receiving care, a pastor who only gives, leads dysfunctionally and burns out.
Pastoring of pastors seeks to respond to this by supporting pastors and their spouses, helping them grow personally and ministerially. This normally happens through 1) small groups walking together regularly, while providing mutual support and care; and, 2) mentoring relationships.
The Pastoring of Pastors (PoP) Task Force, led by David Kornfield, has designed seminars and tools for denominational and movement leaders, pastors and their spouses, to develop PoP groups and movements. As pastors walk in this, they pass it on to their key leaders, helping their church to be much healthier. Healthy pastor, healthy church!
Two PoP training retreats are being held in Accra, Ghana, this year. Since initial training in October, African leaders in Burkina Faso, Ghana, Cameroon and the Congo have reproduced PoP training seminars. A February 25th, 2017 seminar follows up on the previous cornerstone-training day, the “Introduction to the Pastored Life”. It is the first of five monthly follow-up training days. It mobilizes participants to begin their PoP groups successfully, pruning their lives and training them in leading PoP groups.
A second retreat, July 10-12, will help pastors think through what it means to be a healthy pastor. Each session includes a self-evaluation in specific areas. Topics include things such as “Healthy Marriage” and “Healing the Wounded Heart.” PoP is expecting to have sixty to one hundred pastors and spouses for the two-day retreat, followed by a one-day training of how to recreate the retreat for others.
“I've learned I have to build in training others to do what I do so that there's a multiplying effect,” Kornfield comments. “For many years I didn't do that, just thinking they would naturally multiply what I ministered. With the exception of a few people, they don't. But now they are, once they have the training and can practice doing parts of the seminar or retreat during the training and see others do the same.”
Have questions about bringing PoP to other countries? Are you involved in PoP and would like to connect with others doing the same? Visit www.pastoringpastors.org or contact Dave Kornfield (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information!