The church is a funny animal.
Staff come and staff leave.
But when staff leave, very seldom do we ever tell the real reasons.
It’s always something like:
“God is moving me on to another area of ministry” (although I don’t know what that is yet). That usually should read “My life was hell here, and I’m moving on”)
“We feel God has given us closure here” That usually should read “My life was hell here, and I’m moving on”)
So… when I read articles like this, it makes me think (along with EVERY OTHER PERSON from the church that reads it… that there are big holes in the story. Here are the reasons given in this newspaper article:
From the pastor:
“we feel like the Lord is calling us to something different”
“we want to be obedient to God in our next step of faith”
From the staff:
“many of us are very proud that he is bold enough and courageous enough to step out on faith and respond to God’s calling, especially not knowing what the future holds”
From the board:
“we’re trusting and counting on God to lead us and we’re trusting God to guide [the pastor and his wife] as they take this challenging step. I don’t think there is anything greater than responding to God’s call, even if it isn’t clear.”
When staff leave, it puts us in a bit of a pickle.
Very seldom do we want to share the real reasons for departures.
In fact, in some instances, we can’t share specifics.
But we’ve used the “God is leading me in a different direction” to death.
Maybe we should try to give a few more details when we can.
Maybe a pastor could honestly say… look… we tried as good brothers and sisters in Christ to get a long and get on the same page, but it didn’t happen. I’m moving on to allow unity in the body of Christ at this church, and for a leader to come in that will readily accept the vision that this board has for the future of this church.
Or for a board member: We’ve really tried our best to work with so and so… but our ideas on the future of the church are very different. We together decided that we needed to part ways so that the future of the church can work on being more united than divided, and so that we can get on with the mission God has called us to.
What do you think?
Do we share too much or too little when staff leave our church?
Leave a comment below.
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