Why is the Ministerial Association Board recommending that we re-purpose and re-energize this 134 year old institution? When we have godly leaders and helpful structures in place at both the District and National level, why should we preserve (much less invest in) a grassroots network of pastors and leaders?
The simple answer: because we need each other.
Pastors need other pastors. Missionaries need other missionaries. Chaplains need other chaplains. Ministry Directors need other Ministry Directors. Just as believers need one another to encourage and stir each other up, so leaders need each other. And with leaders, the stakes are that much higher.
We’ve all seen the carnage that comes from a high profile pastor or leader who falls into sin. That is the result of disconnection and lack of accountability. The same thing happens all over the country every day in smaller churches and ministry settings – it just doesn’t make the news.
I’ve only been in ministry twenty years but my number is at least that many who were once in ministry and now their marriage is over or their kids won’t talk to them or their ministry is ruined or all three (and more sometimes). The best case, sadly, is the ones who had the sense to drop out of ministry before those other outcomes resulted.
Praise God for our Recovery Church Ministry! Dozens of EFCA leaders have found hope and experienced healing through this proactive process. Two of many reasons we believe it is important to our movement to re-energize the MA is to support Recovery Church financially (it’s one of the primary items in our budget) and to mobilize peer-to-peer relationships among leaders that will reduce the need for this recovery ministry over time.
Why does the EFCA need a Network of leaders? Because we need each other. As leaders, we need to encourage, connect with, exhort, support, partner with and counsel one another. Yes, this happens in our Districts. Yes, the National office is intentional about caring for us. But the Ministerial Association is our network. It is our way of standing together – of committing to each other.
Because we need each other.