Thursday, June 23, 2011

I have been thinking....

I am awlays drawn to articles about pastors and people's take on them...why? Because I am one.
So, I stumbled on an article that I would like to share with you all and it is entitled: 5 Types of Pastors:

The Catalytic Pastor:
The catalytic pastor is wired to stir things up. They’re gifted in the prophetic and tend to be charismatic leaders. These pastors have lots of energy and are focused on the mission of the church … that is, reaching the community for Jesus Christ. In the “right” church, they’ll grow it without a doubt. In the “wrong” church, they’ll create conflict, they’ll be frustrated, and they’ll either burn out or they’ll move on … assuming they’re not fired first. Catalytic pastors are ideal church planters but often lack the finesse and patience for church transformations (except in those VERY rare churches that are truly willing to do anything to reach the community for Jesus).

The Cultivating Pastor:
The cultivating pastor is wired to break up hard ground, plant seeds, nurture the fields, and are both willing and able to bring in a harvest. They’re gifted in big-picture understanding, systems analysis, and systems manipulation (in a good way). Because of their systems understanding and their patience, they are able to cultivate change and transformation over time. However, they’re tenacious and are used to getting their way in the long run … because they know how to deal with obstacles that get in their way. Cultivating pastors are well suited for church transformations in churches that can afford to effect gentle change that takes significant time … as many as seven to ten years.

The Conflict-Quelling Pastor:
The Conflict-Quelling pastor is exactly the type that the name implies … they’re the guys and gals who are natural or skilled peacemakers, mediators, and/or conflict managers. These pastors are wired differently than any of the other pastoral types. They’re not catalytic and they’re distinctive from chaplains. Instead, these folks can walk into a congregation and in short order assess the situation and instinctively seem to know who the major players are. They are affable and able to build bridges. They tend to be quiet and reflective … when they speak, they do so with conviction, wisdom, and certainty. Conflict-Quelling pastors make excellent interim pastors and/or troubled-church pastors.

The Chaplain Pastor:
The Chaplain pastor is wired for peace, harmony, and pastoral care. This is the type of pastor that has been produced by seminaries for several decades, though a few … a very few … seminaries are retooling. Chaplain pastors eschew change and value status quo. They don’t want to stir the waters; rather, they want to bring healing to hurting souls.They are excellent listeners and tend to be good networkers within the community, primarily so they can extend their ministry, but also so they can refer those in need to oasis’ of help. Chaplain pastors don’t grow churches. In fact, a Chaplain pastor will hasten a congregation’s demise because they tend to focus on those within the congregation rather than in bringing new converts to Jesus Christ. Churches that have very little hope of transformation and church growth do well with Chaplain pastors who serve as hospice care.

The Catatonic Pastor:
This type of pastor is, frankly, either lazy or sick. There are far too many of these pastors. They take refuge in their offices ostensibly to do sermon preparation, create brochures, sum up numbers, and so on, but ultimately they’re spinning their wheels and accomplishing very little. They may or may not do the hospital visitation, but they seldom miss an opportunity to have a meal with one of the inside buddies. Catatonic pastors tend to be well liked by the power holders in the church, because the Catatonic pastor is easily manipulated and seldom, if ever, makes waves … except when they need to accomplish something and fail to meet even the lowest of expectations. Indeed, Catatonic pastors may remain as the senior pastor of a church for many years because they know how to schmooze their way into grace. Churches that hate change often end up with excellent examples of Catatonic pastors. Catatonic pastors may spend a lot of time “at work” but any congregation that sets performance goals for their Catatonic pastor will quickly discover that time in the office does not guarantee results. Of course, Catatonic pastors do not grow churches, are poor chaplains - even poor hospice chaplains, and they pretty much destroy wherever they root … and they’re more like crabgrass or bamboo that, once established, is almost impossible to eradicate.



Ian said...

Where do pastors who focus on preaching the word and educating their flock on it fall in? Conversely where do pastors who focus on programs first fall in?

Anonymous said...

None of them sound like great options. I would look for a different line of work.....

Anonymous said...

Well the conflict-quelling pastor sounds like a nice guy but he gets the worst job.....who wants to only get term positions or work with the problem churches....

Anonymous said...

Which one are you pastor Jerry?

I suspect you're mostly the 'catalytic'and I hope with an equal amount of 'cultivating', only because the latter is what I would be.

I find the shaker and the mover the most appealing, and to be honest, that is why I am at Soul. Conflict is to be assumed. We don't need to pretend the world is a peaceful place. But with a good system in place (systems = me) rules of engagement can allow for honesty and a church culture that makes conflict a good thing, for as I understand it conflict signals something or some things that need to change and that they have come to the fore. A good system will anticipate the need for change before the conflicts get overheated. You see, the 'catalytic' and the 'cultivating' pastors are one step ahead of the pastors who are primarily 'conflict-quelling' or a 'Chaplain'.

With everything I know about our culture, passivity prevails - with males especially. We don't need quellers and chaplains, we need changers. Besides, we're in the midst of a Spiritual Battle, and the enemy wants us quiet and complacent and let the secular culture keep us the bleating sheep (sheep bleat - it's not an error for a substitute for that swear word Christ was a scapegoat. Goats have horns and butt heads and eat trash - and yes, they also bleat (who knew?).

But I suspect, really, most pastors, although it may not be true, feel they are catatonic. A good strategic system can mobilize congregants installing the pastor at the helm doing the shaking, the rattling and the rolling. Myers Briggs profiling has revealed that the majority of people are practitioners, applicators of the legwork. Get people mobilized, and they will do extraordinary things, but mostly because they're not strategists, they're sensors ( They follow visionaries, to get to work.

Okay, I'm an idealist. I thought I was a realist. But I guess realism is for the practitioners, not the strategists. All I can say is that I am mostly dissatisfied with doing church. Read the scriptures. They're so out-of-synch with present reality.

Okay, I need a goat to straighten me out. Thanks for John's men's group. I get a good dose of reality - almost - okay, not quite yet - there's work to do - where are those guys with the goatees.