How To Become A Pastor

A Church Pastor leads the Protestant congregation. Pastors are generally the leaders of Baptist, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Methodist, and Presbyterian churches. Their main duties include leading their congregations in worship by giving sermons from the Bible and performing ceremonies, such as baptisms, funerals, and weddings.

Pastor Job Description
Pastors generally perform the following duties:

  • Pray and promote religious teachings
  • Read from sacred texts
  • Prepare sermons and other talks
  • Organize and lead the religious congregation
  • Spread religious awareness through sermons, speeches, discussions, and writing
  • Counsel individuals with various emotional, spiritual, or personal needs
  • Visit people in homes, prisons, and hospitals to extend support
  • Supervise religious rites and ceremonies
  • Train church leaders, youth groups, or community groups

How To Become A Pastor?
Educational Requirements
Pastors are appointed in their positions by an official appointment process, and the educational requirements of pastors are dependent on the needs of the congregation. In some denominations, pastors are required to have a bachelor's degree from schools of theology, which should also be aligned with their denomination. Educational requirements for pastors are higher in more populated and urban areas, compared to rural ones.

Online Education
If you are an aspiring pastor, you may choose the option of online education. Pastors usually study language courses in Latin, Greek, and Hebrew. The language courses enable them to read early translations of the Bible and other religious texts. There are other pastor courses which include Old Testament, New Testament, Christian history, and Ministry Experience.

Online education has several distinct benefits. It offers students a lot of flexibility and convenience. They may study at their own pace and at the time which suits them best. Online education is also cost effective as students do not incur any travelling or textbook costs. Another major benefit is that the students do not need to give up their jobs or other responsibilities in order to continue their education and earn a degree. Also, older students may benefit from online classes because some may feel uncomfortable attending classes with students who are much younger.

Pastors should have knowledge in the following subjects in order to perform their duties effectively:

  • English Language
  • Theology and Philosophy
  • Management and Administration
  • Customer Service
  • Education and Training
  • Psychology

Skills And Abilities
There are some essential skills and personal qualities that pastors should possess:

  • Leadership skills
  • Ability to respond effectively to the concerns of people
  • Devotion for the church
  • Strong ethics and inclination of volunteering
  • Ability to motivate and inspire others
  • Public speaking and influencing skills

Salary And Career Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment opportunities for pastors are likely to increase about as fast as the average growth rate for other occupations from 2010 to 2020. Employment and salaries are usually dependent on the experience of a pastor and the average income of the people being served by the pastor.  Information from August 2013 provided by state that associate pastors earned an average salary of around $60,000 annually, and church pastors with at least five years of experience earned an average salary of over $85,000.


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