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Pastor Didn't Help Out

Several men in my church will respond to the Pastor's call for help. On the the project day, everyone shows up to help out. But not the Pastor. Some men seem to get upset that the Pastor asked for help, but isn't helping out himself.
Is it unreasonable for the Pastor to help out?

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 ---sag on 4/7/08
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A "complaining" spirit isn't from GOD. Exodus 15:22-25. Saying NO to a request isn't "complaining". That is what Jesus said to tell others. Matthew 5:37

I unexpectedly got myself into a rut by saying YES to every request from my Pastor for help. Eventually, I got "burned out" and had to say NO to more volunteer work. That is what got the Pastor upset. I've met many other people who have been through this "help out until you burnout" cycle.

---sag on 6/17/08

Somebody said it here about this generation. There are too many complainers and not enough work getting done. WAKE UP PEOPLE. YOUR PASTOR IS NOT REQUIRED TO HOLD YOUR HAND. Either your going to help him, or your not. Show me where it is written, that if your Pastor asks you to do something that HE has to help you. If you help, praise God for you! If not, then walk away and stop condeming him before you go through more tedious trials, and the curse comes back on you. It's you choice.
---Dan on 6/17/08

You can't praise the Lord with your thumb in your mouth. Do all things without murmuring or complaining. That is the prerequisite to shining as a light in this world.
---Linda on 6/8/08

Today's "churches" are not what Jesus wanted them to be. Today's "churches" are buildings (let's go to church), denominations, non-profit organizations. Churches, as described in the bible, are nothing more than Christians. Jesus is coming soon to join with (marry) people not buildings, denominations or non-profit corporations. Christians spend too much time taking care of the building instead of more important things like spreading the gospel of the coming Kingdom of God.
---Steveng on 6/8/08

As in any corporation, there are leaders who delegate jobs to other people. The pastor never volunteer for the jobs, or he would do it himself. Each Christian has gifts they must perform. If with all the jobs that need to be done to upkeep a church building, why have a congregation if the pastor does everything? He wouldn't have time to do what he does best, minister to people.
---Steveng on 6/8/08

God is no respector of persons and shows no partiality.
God will work with each person that will come to Him with the same amount of intensity and to the same degree that He will work with anyone else. In other words, there is equal treatment for everyone!

We all have an equal chance to be able enter into God's perfect will for our lives - and then allow Him to build that life up and take it into the specific directions that He will want to take it in.
---lisa on 6/8/08

When we start glorifying the "pastor" as they do in shepherding churches, you risk following a man more than following Christ.

The pastor's job is no more difficult than any other "job". It should be a calling and not a "job".
If you have been called to be a pastor, there will be grace, and favor upon you to fulfill your calling. It will be a blessing not only to the pastor, but to the congregants.
---lisa on 6/8/08

If it is a "job", and difficult every step of the way, it's highly possible that you're not called to be a pastor.
In the day of "pastors" of prosperity, evangelists of money, and those falling for the shepherding movement, the only one who deserves glory and honor is Jesus Christ.
---lisa on 6/8/08

I'd say you get to know a pastor, so you know how he does things, before you join his church. Our pastor watches everything and tells us what to do, in detail, while helping. He directs us, from his overall perspective of what he knows is going on, plus how he wants to effect people. My shoulders are giving out. How he and others lift amps over their heads, etc., I don't know. When they work, they are chilling out together. If you aren't learning from how your pastor does things . . .
---Bill_bila5659 on 6/7/08

Most pastors are paid very well to do their "job". It can be a cushy job, not much physical labor involved.
If their's hard work, he can call on others to perform volunteer work.
---lisa on 6/7/08

Lazy pastors that depend on volunteers to get all of the hard work accomplished are lazy. Everyone else works hard for their money, too.
A pastor that lives on donations should at least throw his hat in the ring.
---lisa on 6/7/08

My Bishop and Priest always help out with there is something that needs to be done. Sacred Scriptures and the Early Church calls upon Bishops/Priests, the ones who have Apostolic Succession, to protect and guard the Sheep. St. Ignatius of Antioch tell us to be in communion with the Bishops, Priests, etc (To Polycrap 6:1-2, Epistle to the Smyraens,8 AD 110). Even though your Bishop doesn't have Apostolic Succession, pray for him!

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, Have Mercy on me, a sinner.
---Ramon on 6/7/08

Help your Pastor when he needs you. He has a big job. Maybe the most important job there is. Pray for him.
---Ellen on 6/6/08

John, you are corecct sir. I have been around for awhile, and only the self centered baby Christians need someone to old their hand and talk them through everything. A true Christian member of the church would do whatever the Pastor asked them to do without reservations or complaining. In other word's, do it unto the Lord. Your reward will be great.
---Pete on 6/5/08

My Pastor does the same thing a lot. Sometimes he helps out and sometimes he doesn't. He doesn't have to do anything besides Pastor his church. The days he does help out is him going above and beyond his duties. Your judging your Pstor unfairly. Your looking at it all wrong. He is the Pastor and you are members. He shouldn't have to do any other work. You help him. He has enough responsibilities. In fact, pray for your Pastor everyday. Do you love him?
---Ken on 6/5/08

I can't believe that there are so many judgemental people here. Your Pastor is not obligated to help out on a project. Who say's he is supposed to? He is the one who asks for YOUR help. Your not his boss and you should be a non complaining, faithful servant unto God by being loyal to your Pastor. Eloy is ready to cast him into hell practically, and too many of you are complainers. Pray God does not judge you with the same judgement. This is surely a generation of rebellious Christian's.
---Michael on 6/5/08

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I understand their frustration and feel that if he had not intended to show up then he should have told the people beforehand:)
---jody on 6/5/08

The Pastor already has a very important job to do, and that is to shepard the congregation and deligate work for certain memebers to do. Your Pastor is doing what he is supposed to do. He would be ineffective if he was running around doing everything. Even corporate business runs this way. Help your Pastor, he needs you.
---John on 6/5/08

Sag, thanks for describing your church. I probably wouldn't have noticed in a church that size either. Mine is one storey and 3 rooms - rather different from yours - so any change is immediately noticed by all present. One thing bothers me though. No-one should be expected to go up ladders on a 3 storey building. Scoffolding and skill are required for that sort of work and the pastor should not have expected any non-professional to be involved.
---RitaH on 4/18/08

Perhaps the so-called pastor is no pastor at all, but the wicked slothful servant. Not all leaders are supernaturally ordained by God, but many have only been ordained by sinful clay, and you will know them by their fruits.
---Eloy on 4/18/08

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You make an excellent point.

My thought is that we should give your pastor the benefit of the doubt. It may be that he had to council with someone, or had an emergency that kept him from attending the work day.

In our church, we'll call a work day, and have 3 or 4 show up including the pastor. Now that's sad.

Lord bless you,
---trey on 4/17/08

How true!
---Frank on 4/17/08


Paul was an excellent example of labor. He did work for the Lord and work as a tentmaker. Many jobs were difficult and dangerous. Paul was shipwrecked and imprisoned. Yet, he never grew tired of working for the Lord. I believe that this was because Paul's life was "balanced" between work and the Lord.

Today, there isn't much of this "balance". People do too much, or too little, work. Some Pastors have to work hard at getting enough people to help out.
---sag on 4/17/08

People, we are called to be a holy nation of priests before our God. That means we have the responsebility, not any one else. If you want it done, and can do it, get 'er done. When you step up and do it other's will follow. Don't wait for your preacher, your teacher, your bishop, your wife, whoever just do it and quite your complaining.
---dan on 4/17/08

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Paul wrote that he laboured with his own hands supplying his need and that of them with him.
Epaphroditus was sick nigh unto death labouring to make up for the lack of others.
Peter was a fisherman. Aquilla and Priscilla were tentmakers with Paul.
There are too many preachers today that think they are Paul and Barnabas except they use the liberty they think they have rather than being an example to the flock.
Then again with today's lazy generation, maybe they are examples after all!
---Frank on 4/16/08


I didn't inspect the church building or notice any change in it's appearance. I'm assuming that the painting never got done.

This was a project that I don't think anyone wanted to do. Not many people are willing to climb 2 to 3 stories on a ladder in the wind. Anyway, this is all history now because I now longer go to that church.

I learned a lot of things from helping out at churches. Some good and some bad. GOD has used these experiences to make me a stronger Christian.
---sag on 4/16/08

Sag, "I took my vacation day on the day that the church was to be painted. I don't know if the work ever got done." If my church had been repainted I'd jolly well notice the fact. How come you cannot tell the difference, or is it that you never returned to that particular church?
---RitaH on 4/16/08


Well, yes, that can leave a bad taste in people's mouths.

But, then again, it all depends on how you look at it. We human beings NEED rest and relaxation. We "waste" 1/4-1/3 of every day sleeping. Several times, Jesus fled from the crowds to be alone (ministring to his own needs, rather than theirs).

Vacations are a NECESSARY part of our health and well-being, so spending time on a vacation is just as "legitimate" as on going to work.
---StrongAxe on 4/14/08

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Again I thank God for this site. There are many great,knowledgable and spiritual persons here. We really do learn from one another. It is ok to disgree. But everything we do, must be done in love.
---Robyn on 4/12/08


At a church that I used to attend, the Pastor asked for volunteers to paint the church. He had a sign-up sheet ready.

I politely asked if the Pastor would be there to help us out. He laughed and said he would be on vacation that day. That is WHY we were have the sign-up that day. Hmmm.

I took my vacation day on the day that the church was to be painted. I don't know if the work ever got done. Nobody ever talked about it from the day forward.
---sag on 4/12/08


It depends on the situation. Perhaps he is asking people to help with physical jobs like moving, and is not physically fit himself, and couldn't contribute much.

Perhaps he's asking because he is over-extended doing volunteer work elsewhere. For him to show up in this case would defeat the purpose.

One should look at the big picture, not just this incident. Does the Pastor ask for help while he goes off and plays golf? If so, then one would have a right to feel used.
---StrongAxe on 4/10/08

This is part of the reason the church is falling apart and does not have the obedience,reverence and respect for leadership it once did. The people are tired of being used and fleeced, in many cases. The leaders feel they are above the members and this brings discord and other evils. The pastor should have pitched in. He is not above the members.
---Robyn on 4/10/08

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Darlene 1, RitaH:

This blog is a great example of how we "share and learn" from one another.

I used to be one of those who would respond to every Pastor's call for help. I learned to get my priorities "straight" for the next time.

The church could have taken an offering and used that to hire some piano movers. Safer for everyone.

Oh well, GOD let me learn from my "bad" experiences. I praise him for keeping me safe.

---sag on 4/10/08

2. It doesn't matter whether the job is required by the church itself or a member or local person who cannot afford to have it done. In the U.K. there are organization who help the elderly and poor to keep their houses and gardens in good order. It is usually provided free or for a very reduced payment. Perhaps church leaders should be aware of these organizations and point people in the right direction rather than risk harming themselves
---RitaH on 4/10/08

Having read more detail of the jobs where help was needed I am worried. Some jobs need specialist equipment and men trained for the work. If sore backs and pinched fingers were the only harm done in moving a piano I am amazed. Someone could have been killed or very seriously injured and church insurance would probably have been invalid. Anything involving standing on something (ladder, platform etc.) should be done by those who know how to do the job, inspect the equipment etc.
---RitaH on 4/10/08

Sag that is a good way to think of it if you are going to do it. I learned through experience years ago it should be God first,family,job,church but serving the church isn't the same as puttting God first. I used to think every time Pastor said something needed doing,I would be there to help. I was wrong!! I left my husband alone to do it,he should come first over chuch chores. If you help disabled people that's a different story completely.
---Darlene_1 on 4/9/08

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Bill bila5659, Darlene 1:

These jobs were performed for "serving" other people. Some people couldn't afford something. Others were physically unable to do something. Some church jobs had to be done. "Serving" others is "serving" GOD. That was the good.

A very nerve-racking, and dangerous, job involved moving the church's piano, from the church, into a townhouse. No elevator. Only stairs. Just a few sore backs and pinched fingers.

---sag on 4/9/08

Frankly it isn't church members place to reroof houses,change oil in cars,move church members and the things needed done by church members. Sounds like personal problems to me. Just because they are members of a church doesn't mean they have a right or the Pastor either,to have other members do jobs for a persons private life. A man ends up doing for others until his own family isn't coming first. That's wrong. Things related to church needs should be worked out where same men aren't doing all the work.
---Darlene_1 on 4/9/08

I think the pastor should help out unless he is physically unable to do so or an emergengy of some type has come uo.
---shirley on 4/9/08

these volunteer work has become an obligation to pastors. just bec. believers say no to these volunteer work does not mean you are selfish. it is easy to exploit & pervert in the name of obedience to do volunteer work. that is why some believers think that their success depends on 'volunteer work' pastors impose on people
---mike on 4/9/08

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pastors not helping in volunteer work are not the only issues. sometimes you are in need of help when you are suffering physically, emotionally, & psychologically. pastors will point to sin & blame you that it is your fault why you are suffering. this is another issue where pastors are not helping out but rather making your situation WORST - putting you in bondage, weight on your shoulders & missing the blessings.
---mike on 4/9/08


Yes, many people expect the Pastor, visiting Missionary, special speaker, etc. to do ALL the work. Many end up "burnt out" for trying to do too much work by themselves.

It would be nice if everyone understood that we are all people. Everyone needs to do their "fair share" of the work. Likewise, everyone needs a time of "rest and relaxation". I think that the church would be better "balanced" and much better off.

---sag on 4/9/08

No! and I have notice that. And I believe he was a God called preacher too. I believe a preacher should attend all functions and ect. They should let other things go. If a preacher cannot attend to business at hand then scrap the project or function.>>>That is my thoughts on it, anyways.
---catherine on 4/9/08

The pastor should be upset that he has to ask for the help. Where are the deacons? Those types of jobs are theirs, not his. A pastor should never have to worry about the basics of the building. He should not even have to worry about basic flock care. He is to pray, study, and preach. That's it.
---dan on 4/9/08

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sag, 1). I feel sure that those who DID volunteer for these jobs did so in accordance with the FREE time they had. Their volunteering would not impinge on their paid work or shopping, housework, cooking meals etc. If you want your pastor to be a volunteer as well as your pastor it will still have to fit in with his paid work and all these other things. His paid work involves more than some people realise.
---RitaH on 4/9/08

2). Before criticising please ensure that you know what he was doing when he wasn't re-roofing houses etc. Perhaps he was visiting the sick in hospital or even doing some voluntary work that you know nothing about at all because he does it in secret. I know pastors who dig the gardens of the elderly and help with d.i.y. tasks where there is no family member to help. Some pastors do help OUTSIDE their churches but they don't necessarily blow their trumpet about it.
---RitaH on 4/9/08

Hi, sag . . . so, the roofing and painting could be what you meant in another blog, by "dangerous" work. Were there other "dangerous" things?

It's a point, that a pastor specializes in prayer and ministry of the word of God. Deacons specialize in material matters.
I'm going by Acts 6:1-7.

And leaders are to follow Peter's directive, "nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock." (1 Peter 5:3)
---Bill_bila5659 on 4/8/08

sag...This scenario is totally opposite of what we have experienced in several small churches we have helped. Most of these churches think the pastor should do all the work for them.
---Susie on 4/8/08

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The Lord said that the leader should be the servant.
The pastor should be an example to the flock in all things. He should be the first to be willing to help.
---Frank on 4/8/08

Jobs where Pastors have asked for help, yet didn't show up:

Painting church buildings.
Re-Roofing houses.
Changing oil in cars.
Moving church members.
Remodeling church rooms.
Moving entire churches.
Driving church vehicles.

My "taking breaks" upset some Pastors. Why?
I'm a human being too. Even GOD rested after his work. Genesis 2:1-3.

I've learned to set LIMITS on how much volunteer work I do at any church.
---sag on 4/8/08

I would think that it depends on what type of help the pastor asked for and why the help was needed. "others should tell him flat out,either you show up and help too or we won't do your jobs." Was he asking for help with HIS jobs or was he asking for the window frames to be repainted or something else which was NOT HIS JOB? There is too little information here to know whether criticism is fair or not.
---RitaH on 4/8/08

Acts 6:2 Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables.

It's wrong to think the pastor should leave his calling to do mundane work. That's not what he's paid for and it's not the best use of his talent.
It says elsewhere that the man of God is worthy of double honor, don't follow the fools who lay charge to his account.
---pharisee on 4/8/08

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You should not even begin with a question like this unless you know for sure what the Pastor was/is doing. His job is to teach and equip the saints for the work of the ministry. It is not to wait tables or drive nails.
Unless I knew how much work it is being a Pastor I'd not say much. If you did know you wouldn't have asked this. I think you work a lot less hours than he does. Plus, your question should be directed to him not us.
---Elder on 4/8/08

Did anyone bother to ask why the Pastor wasn't there? Maybe something came up, like he had to go pray for the sick or he was sick. You won't know until you ask why he wasn't there. If he just blowed everyone off, still have the men go to him and talk in love. A Pastor shouldn't expect others to do something if he isn't going to do it himself.
---Rebecca_D on 4/8/08

The men have a right to be upset. I don't think anyone should ask others to do something they aren't willing to do themselves. If there isn't a physical reason Pastor can't help out,the others should tell him flat out,either you show up and help too or we won't do your jobs.
---Darlene_1 on 4/8/08

There is a misconception regarding the pastors time. The general idea is that the pastor is busier than other people, However, others have full time jobs and volunteer their free time where the pastors extra meetings, etc has already been assessed when the salary was determined. In essence, the pastor is getting paid for most if not all of the counseling and meetings. Pastor is a called position like other positions in the body, The board needs to have a session with that pastor
---myke on 4/8/08

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It is unconscionable for you the parishioner io think you or equal with the pastor. And to suggest that the pastor do any work is outrageous. Calmly take your orders, and keep your mouth shut.
---Mima on 4/8/08

As a leader you have to be willing to work just as hard as those you ask to help.
---Br on 4/8/08

It all depends. I really don't know what "help out" you are talking about. I do know that I might need help from time to time, like picking up the yard after the snows have melted. I couldn't reciprocate because of a bad heart. That, the bad heart, is the reason I might have needed help in the first place. If it's something like this, the problem is with those who helped but expected some return on their "investment."
---ed_the_other_one on 4/7/08

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