What a great list of ideas from Mark Dance and our friends at Lifeway.
33 Ways to Bless Your Pastor
By Mark Dance
I have gleaned some of these ideas from pastoring three wonderful churches for almost three decades. Other ideas came from social media polls and websites. Not all pastors are single staff married men, but most are, so please adapt this list for your particular pastor(s) and church.
- Express love and encouragement in writing and/or in person.
- Set out a gift basket in the church lobby for notes and gifts.
- Mow the pastor’s lawn when his family is on vacation or ministry leave.
- Give a gift card to the ministry couple’s favorite restaurant and provide creative childcare options.
- Ask your pastor how you can specifically pray for his family.
- Deliver a favorite dessert/meal to his home or office.
- Arrange and purchase a couple’s retreat.
- Give a brief word of encouragement and prayer on a Sunday morning.
- Include his family’s photo in print and social media outlets.
- Provide appropriate time off for vacations.
- Take your pastor for a meal and talk about his life, not ministry.
- Loan out your favorite vacation spot (cabin, camper, time-share).
- Initiate caring involvement when your ministry family faces life-challenges, like sickness or death.
- Celebrate with them in the joys of life, such as a new baby, graduations, weddings, etc.
- Support your pastor as he ministers outside your church.
- Form a covenant group who is committed to praying for your pastors each day of the week.
- Encourage at least one day of Sabbath rest each week.
- Support an annual spiritual renewal retreat to refresh your pastor’s intimacy with the Lord.
- Talk to them directly if you have any concerns, but not on a Sunday or in writing.
- Care for your pastor’s health by sponsoring a health club membership
- Take your pastor somewhere fun: game, concert, hunting, etc.
- Specifically share how God has used him to challenge, enrich, and encourage your walk with Jesus.
- Provide a generous salary, insurance, and retirement.
- Allow your pastor’s wife to “be herself” and find her own ministry niche.
- Financially support your pastor and wife as they attend marriage-strengthening events and getaways.
- Support and encourage your pastor’s involvement in missions.
- Remember birthdays with a personal card or social media blessing.
- Celebrate Pastor Appreciation Day/Month each year with notes, cards, and gifts for the pastor and his wife.
- Encourage and support an appropriate sabbatical from ministry after 5, 10, and 15+ years of ministry.
- Allow your pastor’s children to just be kids.
- Give unused sports or concert tickets to your pastor’s family.
- Encourage your ministry family to have friends in the church.
- Bless your ministry family with a special anniversary gift.