For Pastors

PASTORS IN TRANSITION

At various moments within a pastor's life, questions of "fit" and "call" and "tenure" come to the forefront. Discerning a wise course can be a challenge, requiring significant listening to the stirring of God's Spirit, to the voices of significant others, and to one's own inner being. For more on this, follow this link to chapter 2 of Effective Leadership in the Church, especially page 25 re: "confluence."

If you are wrestling with your sense of call to your present ministry, and want to open yourself to the possibility of a new place of ministry, consider the following course of action:

  1. Update your ministerial profile
  2. Respond to advertisements and public notices of vacant positions.
  3. Network with friends, family and acquaintances as advocates. Word of mouth is an effective way to communicate availability.

It is considered acceptable and even expected for ministers to be active participants in the calling process.

If you are wrestling with your sense of call to ordained ministry in general, or to some particular form of ordained ministry, you may want to consider a vocational assessment by an experienced team. This can be arranged through the PCR office.

If your discernment process has you wondering about the possibility of serving in the U.S., Canada, or elsewhere, questions surrounding border concerns, work visas and the like may be addressed to Michelle De Bie, Director of Human Resources. She can be reached at mdebie@crcna.org.

For a helpful resource on managing the transition from active ministry to retirement, click on Closing Well, Continuing Strong. Questions concerning retirement and pension may be sent to pension@crcna.org.

CONTINUING EDUCATION GRANTS

Pastor Church Resources has funds available for grants that support continuing education (CE) opportunities such as conferences, classes, coaching, etc. for active CRC pastors and ministry staff. Application deadlines are April 1, August 1, and November 1. The maximum amount that can be requested is $750. Individuals may receive two CE grants in a five year period. We encourage submission of applications before the due date to allow for potential questions to be resolved in a timely manner.

SABBATICALS

We consider sabbaticals to be an essential form of care offered to pastors, nurturing health and sustaining pastors for the long haul of ministry. Healthier pastors are healthier leaders, so congregations too will benefit! For a wealth of information about sabbaticals, sabbatical policies and resources, visit the Sustaining Pastoral Excellence page.

CLERGY CONFIDENTIALITY

Pastors find themselves in sensitive conversations all the time. Some of those conversations result in the pastor knowing key information. Guidelines for how that information should be handled can be found in a 1988 synodical report from the Committee on Clergy Silence. Synod 1988 adopted the recommendations of the report (see pp. 534-535 of the Agenda and Acts of Synod 1988). The report itself can be found on pages 317-341.

PENSION QUESTIONS

If you are an ordained minister in the Christian Reformed Church and have a question about your pension please contact the denomination’s pension office. Email your questions to pension@crcna.org or call them at 1-616-224-0722. You can also access their website at: https://www.crcna.org/resources/church-resources/church-administration-finance/ministers-pension