My inbox overfloweth.
After posting this love letter to Transitional Pastors, I heard from quite a few of you. In fact, I received over 60 private texts, DMs, emails, and phone calls about the state of Transitional Ministry and Transitional Ministry Training in the Church. Here’s the problem: nobody wants to shame or blame their colleagues and yet changes need to be made. Among the comments I heard over and over again:
- My transitional ministry training was a waste of time.
- The transitional ministers teaching the course I took are not themselves effective transitional pastors.
- Some of the faculty who taught my class have never been transitional pastors.
- My recent training prepared me to be an interim pastor ten or twenty years ago.
- The supposedly trained transitional pastor at my church before I was called and installed there did nothing but preach old sermons.
It’s not easy to tell a beloved colleague that their transitional ministry gifts are weak. It’s not easy to share with my colleagues who teach Transitional Ministry Training that their faculty and methods are not preparing leaders to be effective transitional ministers in a late 21st Century, post-pandemic, overwhelmingly divided and anxious culture.
There are some good training offerings out there and there are some stellar transitional leaders out there. I shared one training in particular that I’ve found to be excellent. If you’ve checked them out, please do so again to leave your contact information. (Now there’s a black and white tab to click at the top of their website if you want to be on their mailing list.)
These times demand excellence in the way we serve the Church of Jesus Christ. It’s a critical time when we need about five times more gifted transitional leaders than we currently have. Please consider if God is leading you to be trained for this particular calling. Thank you. And thank you, colleagues, who are questioning if you should continue to serve as or train transitional leaders. It might be time to let some fresh leaders serve in this way.