Five Ways to Show Appreciation to Your Pastor

October is “Pastor Appreciation Month,” and this Sunday, October 11, is “Pastor Appreciation Day."

What are some ways you can show appreciation to your pastor?

1.      Respect the office – the pastoral office is from Christ Himself. Even if you have disagreements with the man in the office, respect the man for the sake of the office.

2.      Pay your pastor a fair and living wage – While we often hear about pastors who live in upscale suburbs, the truth is many pastors make far less than some of their parishioners. Financial stress can have a negative impact on his ministry and even break apart marriages.

3.      Respect his family – his wife is not a co-pastor, and his children are not “pastors in training” (although some may become pastors in due time). Do not place unreasonable expectations upon his family, and encourage him to “skip that meeting” and spend more time with his family.

4.      Defend him from his critics and “snipers” - whenever you hear someone speak badly of your pastor, confront them; tell them to “cut it out” or they will have to answer to the church. If you have an issue with your pastor, go to him personally with the intention of resolving it (see Matthew 18:15-20).

5.      Be a friend – you can be a friend to your pastor by giving him the space to “be himself.” Granted, some parishioners can't handle this: they expect the pastor to be “perfect” and don't want to hear that he struggles or has problems. Be that friend who will listen and not judge him.

There are many other ways that you can show your pastor appreciation, but these are the basics that come to mind. Hopefully these suggestions may get you to thinking about the joys, needs, and challenges facing the pastor Christ has placed in your midst in service to His Church.

Pastor Ben Eder

Pilgrim Lutheran Church, Kenmore, NY

First Vice President of the English District