Is The Church Open For Business?

This morning a coworker asked what it would take for me to become a full-time minister. (I’m not sure, but I think he wants to get rid of me.) After discussing it for a while, we turned toward discussing if the church is a business or not. I took the position that, although a church is a non-profit with a budget and financial responsibilities, that it should not be run as a business with marketing strategies and customer service departments to keep ’em coming.

For instance, the church we are a part of had a member say they were going to leave if we didn’t put our praise and worship back the way they like it after our pastor made a change. Pastor refused to give in, even though this person was the church’s biggest benefactor. The budget has been struggling since, but I believe our pastor made the right call – not whoring out the church.

It is not my ambition to become a full-time, salaried pastor.

I do, however, want nothing more than to fulfill my calling as a minister. Honestly, I do hope that it will turn into something I will be able to do on a full-time basis. I can easily see myself filling my days ministering and teaching. But I don’t think the church should be run as a business. I don’t want to be the CEO of an NPO. I don’t want to spend my days strategizing and angling to fill the pews (and the offering plates).

I’m good with being a teacher, a leader and a mentor (maybe even a pastor), just not a businessman.


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