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It’s Almost Over for Your Pastor

October 28, 2018

Brent Mustoe is a friend in real life from seminary, a colleague, and someone worthy of the title Prayer Warrior…which he’s too humble to accept. He graciously gave me permission to share with you here a recent piece he wrote, and I’m getting out of the way —

It’s Pastor Appreciation Month. If you’ve not done anything for your pastor yet to tangibly show your appreciation, it’s getting late. Being a pastor is a 24/7 calling. We celebrate with you, grieve with you, laugh with you and cry with you. We officiate at your wedding, baptize your children, bury your family, hold your hand at the hospital and sometimes lean in and hear you take your last breath.

The longest I ever stayed with a family was 72 straight hours. The nursing staff at the hospital would sneak insulin to me daily knowing I didn’t bring any from home. I watched this saint pass from this life to the next. It was an honor to be there as a witness.

My saddest moments came when I, along with my brother and our families, experienced my dad and then my mom breath their last breath. When my mom died, I had the experience of reaching up and closing her eyes. I cry even now thinking about it. Nobody tells you these things when you say yes to the “call.”

Being a pastor is a lonely calling. People would assume Mary Ann knew all that they shared with me. She did not and still does not. We continue to take confidentiality seriously.

But the joys definitely outweigh the sorrows. Especially if a pastor has a congregation that appreciates them. Most parishioners do appreciate all a pastor does, but there are always those well-intentioned dragons for whom nothing is ever good enough…bless their hearts!

So celebrate your pastor this month: gift cards, love offerings, meals brought to the parsonage, offers of child care, time away to pray and plan, a special stole or a pulpit robe if they don’t already have one, appropriate cards, a Sabbatical away, trip to the Holy Land, pay for their family to go to Annual Conference with them, a unique set for Holy Communion, the list is endless.

My point is do something, anything that lets your pastor know they are a vital part of their community. One complement can carry a person for several weeks.

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