Help Needed

Recently I was asked to help in the construction of a course for newly qualified pastors. The purpose of the course is to teach some of the things pastors need to know but will never learn in university or college.

My training was so long ago that all I dimly remember is how best to sharpen my quill and prevent the rush lamps from guttering. Therefore I have to ask advice of those who are more recently qualified than I.

If you are a minister in a congregation, a student at present tolerating training or a parishioner enduring a half formed ministry let me know what you think ministers should know but never seem to have taken on board.

If you are one of the fortunate few who have a minister who is a paragon don’t tell us his name, it would only make the rest of us jealous. But do let us know what it is he does that is right and other ministers should learn.

Reviewing my own time in the ministry I think that the most useful thing I could have been helped with would be how to maintain personal spiritual discipline. It is far too easy in the ministry to substitute work for a personal relationship. Bible study for sermons is not the same as Bible study for personal growth, prayer for the congregation is not the same as personal communication with God. The necessary can crowd out the vital.


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