51% of pastors got a raise last year. Did you?
A recent national survey of pastors and church staff shows that the majority of senior pastor respondents (51%) received salary increases “in the past year.” This is an increase of 11 percentage points compared to the previous study. Senior pastor average salaries are the highest they’ve been since Christianity Today started tracking compensation data. This year, average pay slightly surpasses rates earned in 2006, the next highest paid year. This survey, conducted and compiled by Christianity Today and reported on in the 2014-2015 Compensation Handbook for Church Staff, is based on survey data from more than 3,500 churches, representing over 7,500 staff members. Staff members in 14 different positions, ranging from senior pastors to church secretaries, reported on their total compensation package, including details such as salary, housing allowance/parsonage, retirement, life insurance, health insurance, disability insurance, and continuing education allowances. The survey also unveiled other significant details about senior pastors that include:
- Full-time male Senior Pastors receive 40% more in compensation plus benefits than female Senior Pastors.
- Nearly 9 in 10 Senior Pastors receive a housing allowance, but only a slim percentage, a little more than 1 in 10, live in church-provided parsonages.
- Compared to the previous two surveys (2011 and 2009), the percentage of those who have graduate degrees dropped 4 percentage points, from 72% to 68%.