Clergy Moves

Back in the 1970s, Loren Mead identified “Five Developmental Tasks” for transitional leaders. In the next few weeks, some of you will be moving to a new church and/or your church may be recieving new leadership. These five tasks provide a check list for healthy transition:

 

1) Help the congregation come to terms with its History.

Things get crazy when we move

My mother has a suggestion from her mother concerning the comforting of cats. Many pets find moving to a new house to be traumatic. So when grandma moved, she always coated the cat’s paws with butter. The animal would spend the time in the car licking her self clean instead of fretting. It would be nice if there were similar procedures for the humans in transit during a clergy move.

 

With that in mind, here are eight thoughts on clergy family moves:

Get creative when you pack

There was a time when most pastoral moves were easier on the congregation than on the clergy family. Denominational officials used to be able to handle pastoral calls and appointments as a game of musical chairs; Alice leaves seminary and goes to church A, Henry leaves church A and goes to the slightly bigger church B, Kim leaves church B and goes to a position in the denomination’s head office. Note that in the past, change meant change in pastors. Today change means new roles and new relationships for both parties. While you, as the pastor, are praying and prodding yourself and your family through the mess of moving, your parishioners may be preparing for an even more challenging change.

Sometime those who stay behind have the biggest transition
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