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Did you know 30% of pastors work 50-to-59 hours on average each week? It’s true! In fact, according to a 2008 LifeWay Research Poll, the average workweek is greater than 50 hours for more than half of all pastors, with 27% reporting 60-to-69 hours and 8% reporting 70 hours or more.
And, while this may be an “average” week, let’s not forget that a pastor’s job is unpredictable. Pastors never know when they are going to get that emergency hospital call in the middle of the night, or that vital request for counseling from a struggling married couple during a what-could-be life-changing argument. They show up during family meltdowns and head toward the car wreck. And, sometimes without even knowing it, they take on the roles of wedding planner and funeral organizer. And, on top of all that, they are responsible for preparing for weekly church services, praying for their congregation and speaking truth (even when it might not be what some want to hear).
With this in mind, and with Pastor Appreciation Day coming up on Sunday, October 13th, we wanted to give you a few ideas and ways on how to reach out to your pastor and mentor to let them know that you appreciate the hard work they put in for you, your family, your church and for the Kingdom.
Arrange A Surprise Party. Be sneaky! Send out a secret invitation letting church members know to meet after the October 13th service in the fellowship hall, at a favorite restaurant, or at an outside venue (it is fall!). Invite attendees to each bring a heartfelt, ministry appreciation card to pass along to the guest of honor. You could even pass out greeting cards to church members the week before. Ask them to write a nice, personal note of thanks and bring it back for the big day.
Organize an Office Makeover. How fun would it be to see your pastor walk into a newly decorated office! Gather some friends (and be sure to get the church secretary involved) and redecorate the pastors’ office with Scripture-filled décor pieces, or stock the desk with inspirational stationery, perpetual calendar and maybe even a new Christian journal.
Support Their Reading Habit. Most ministers really value reading material. Grab a couple of books - one for yourself and one for your pastor - and commit to reading it alongside your mentor. DaySpring has a large selection of books and devotionals that would be the perfect gift for the occasion.
Extend The Blessing. Pass these sticky prayers around to members of the congregation and ask them to write an encouraging message, fun memory, or a prayer for your pastor on one of the notes. Collect the sticky prayers, place them randomly throughout a daily flip calendar and give it to your pastor. This way, your pastor will ‘happen upon’ encouraging notes all year long just by flipping through the calendar.
As we take the time to recognize our hardworking pastor on October 14th, let’s not forget other dedicated members of our ministry team such as our youth minister, Sunday school coordinator, worship leader, church secretary, the list goes on and on. Check out our full selection of Ministry Appreciation Cards & Gifts and don’t forget to say “thanks” - it could be exactly the encouragement your ministry team leader needs to hear today. Why not send them a quick, thank-you Ecard along with a personal note of how they’ve impacted your life?
Looking for more ways to bless your entire ministry team? Check out our entire selection of Ministry Appreciation articles and devotionals to find even more ways to celebrate the month.
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Therefore encourage one another
and build each other up as you are already doing.
1 Thess 5:11 CSB