Why People Love Their Pastor: Three Observations and Seven Reasons Thom Rainer


Why People Love Their Pastor: Three Observations and Seven Reasons

Thom Rainer

I returned to the Twit­ter­verse to find out why church mem­bers love their pas­tors. I must admit that this exer­cise was very grat­i­fy­ing. In the some­what cyn­i­cal and crit­i­cal world in which we live, the mes­sages I received gave me great hope.

As I share in any Twit­ter poll, my approach is nei­ther pre­cise nor sci­en­tif­ic. It is, how­ev­er, fun and a bit infor­ma­tive.

Three Obser­va­tions

Before you jump down and read the results of my sur­vey, allow me to make some obser­va­tions from this poll and other infor­ma­tion I have gleaned. I delin­eate those obser­va­tions into three points.

Church mem­bers over­whelm­ing­ly love their pas­tors. It was amaz­ing to see both the quick­ness and the vol­ume of respons­es to my sim­ple ques­tion. Church mem­bers were eager to express their love for their pas­tors.

Church mem­bers often don’t express their love for their pas­tors. Church mem­bers are more like­ly not to say any­thing about their pas­tors than express their love for them. But if they are specif­i­cal­ly asked, they respond with over­whelm­ing love.

The crit­ics and naysay­ers often drown out those who love their pas­tors. The neg­a­tive peo­ple in the church tend to be loud but in the dis­tinct minor­i­ty. As a con­se­quence, pas­tors often feel like the naysay­ers rep­re­sent the major­i­ty. Most of the time, the vast major­i­ty of the mem­bers are very pos­i­tive about their pas­tors, but they are quiet as well.

Seven Rea­sons

The response to my poll came in fast and furi­ous. You could sense the strong love these church mem­bers have for their pas­tors. Why do you love your pas­tor? Here are the top seven respons­es, list­ed in order of fre­quen­cy.

Our pas­tor loves us and oth­ers. A strong num­ber one response, church mem­bers see the love that over­flows from their pas­tor.

Our pas­tor preach­es the Word and spends time study­ing the Word. Though stat­ed in a num­ber of ways, the respon­dents are grate­ful for the preach­ing and teach­ing min­istry of their pas­tors.

Our pas­tor demon­strates love for his spouse and chil­dren. The mem­bers love their pas­tor because of the obvi­ous pri­or­i­ty of fam­i­ly demon­strat­ed day after day.

Our pas­tor has a ser­vant heart. I heard count­less sto­ries about the sac­ri­fi­cial and servant-like actions of pas­tors. Church mem­bers do notice.

Our pas­tor is hum­ble and trans­par­ent. Many of the char­ac­ter­is­tics begin to sound like the traits of Christ. That’s a good thing!

Our pas­tor shares Christ with oth­ers. The evan­ge­lis­tic lifestyle and words of the pas­tors did not go unno­ticed by the church mem­bers.

Our pas­tor is pas­sion­ate about min­istry. The words “pas­sion­ate” and “pas­sion” came up so many times, I had to include it as its own cat­e­go­ry.

Rea­sons for Encour­age­ment and Hope

Many pas­tors are worn out and dis­cour­aged. I hope you pas­tors know that the crit­ics and the naysay­ers in your church are in the minor­i­ty. I hope you know that most of your con­gre­ga­tion admires you and loves you. I hope these words from church mem­bers around the nation will be a source of encour­age­ment and hope for you.

So, how do you pas­tors feel about these rea­sons you are loved? And what other rea­sons can you church mem­bers have to express your love for your pas­tors?


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