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A Cover letter to a Pastor’s Resume

Since I recently posted a biblical want ad for a pastor, here is an excerpt from a cover letter sent by a pastor to the search committee of a church. This letter came to a church I was assisting in their search for a pastor. I was astounded by the arrogance and copied by hand this portion to keep as an example. Here it is:

Dear Search Committee:

As a pastor with many years experience, I think I may be well qualified for the position of senior pastor that was brought to my attention via the internet outlining your church and need. You will see from the enclosed resume that I have pastored a number of churches. In each case I was able to raise the spiritual standards of the church, increase its effectiveness as a positive witness for Christ (in one case, my current pastorate, doubling Sunday school attendance), and attracting new members in significant numbers.

Having met and exceeded my goals in my present position, I want to challenge myself with a more demanding position. __________ Baptist Church appeals to me very much as this type of challenge. [His only knowledge at this point is a paper add]
I would like to discuss this position with you and will be happy to come in for an interview at your convenience.

Is humility a characteristic desirable in pastors? In fairness it is not often encouraged, especially in resume writing. Yet, the attributing of the numerical growth to himself does seem grossly apparent. There is the typical assumption that increase in numbers means health. The worst part to me is the idea that since his goals have been met and exceeded he is ready to move on. God seems to be significantly absent. And, what does it suggest about pastoral ministry if the goals can be met and then you move on? Isn’t the primary goal the oversight of souls? Can this be “met”, completed, this side of eternity? Of course the suggestion to the receiving church that they will be a good “challenge” is an interesting use of condescension in order to woo a church!

May the Lord deliver us from this sort of attitude and deliver His church from would be pastors with this attitude.

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