Multi-vocational ministers gather for book studies

By John Fillmore

Multi-vocational ministers have been gathering together virtually to study and share their experience as part of Part-Time Pastor, Full-Time Church. This program is offered through the Thriving in Ministry initiative of the Church of the Brethren’s Office of Ministry.

Participants have been sharing insights during two book studies that have focused on the value of multi-vocational ministry and establishing meaningful boundaries that contribute to a thriving ministry. In addition to the valuable content offered by the books, participants have grown closer to each other, finding support as they connect with other pastors from across the country. The book studies are facilitated by Circuit Riders from the program, and based on their success, additional book studies are being considered.

The book studies have engaged ministers in conversation relating to the unique and vital role multi-vocational ministry has in the life of the church, as well as the unique challenges faced by pastors attempting to balance multiple vocations in addition to the demands of family and their personal spiritual development. Participants have met weekly for six weeks, sharing their insights from G. Jeffrey MacDonald’s book Part-Time Is Plenty: Thriving Without Full-Time Clergy and Saying No to Say Yes: Everyday Boundaries and Pastoral Excellence by David Olsen and Nancy Devor.

Part-Time Pastor, Full-Time Church is designed to provide support to multi-vocational Church of the Brethren ministers by connecting them to available resources and support for their ministry. Multi-vocational ministers are encouraged to talk to their district executives about participating in the program, or contact the Office of Ministry directly. Find out more at

— John Fillmore of Idaho District is one of the Circuit Riders for Part-Time Pastor, Full-Time Church.


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