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Do Christians Consider Their Pastors to Be Friends?

Most U.S. adults hold a positive perception of pastors. In Barna’s 2017 The State of Pastors report, the data showed two out of three U.S. adults (66%) and nearly nine in 10 practicing Christians (91%) viewed pastors’ presence as a benefit in their community, while nearly the same percentage (64% U.S. adults, 87% practicing Christians) had a very positive opinion of a pastor they personally knew. In light of October being Pastor Appreciation Month and October 13th being Clergy Appreciation Day, Barna wanted to shed more light on pastoral perceptions on a personal level, outside of regular church services and events. In this article, we will learn more about those who view their pastor in a role other than church leader—and more specifically, as a friend.

Communication Is Key in Periods of Pastoral Transition

It’s clear that communication is a strong factor in the experience during and success of a transition. Unfortunately, communication with and to congregants is often neglected during transitions. A new Barna report produced in partnership with Brotherhood Mutual, Leadership Transitions, examines how churches navigate pastoral change and stay healthy amidst the shift while offering insight on what and how to communicate during a transition.

Planned Pastoral Transitions Lead to Better Outcomes

Every church inevitably goes through a time of leadership transition. Whether because of retirement, scandal, health complications, a change in calling or some other shift in a pastor’s life or career, churches are bound to walk through a pastoral succession of some kind eventually. A new Barna report produced in partnership with Brotherhood Mutual, Leadership Transitions, addresses this universal reality and examines how churches navigate pastoral change and stay healthy amidst the shift.

The Ups and Downs of Ministry

Pastoral ministry certainly has its peaks and valleys, but overall, most pastors are very satisfied with their vocation and love to preach. In partnership with Pepperdine University, Barna conducted a major study of senior pastors called The State of Pastors. In this infographic excerpt from the monograph, pastors weigh in on the best and worst parts of their job.

Barna: This Week

Making resilient disciples does not mean protecting young Christians but preparing them for life on mission. https://t.co/QbNU1mJSr4

@barnagroup • November 20, 2019

Meet the Millennial Parents

By Barna Group • November 19, 2019

FaithView

17% of young adults who regularly attend church say their church is missing opportunities to fight injustice and op… https://t.co/8Epi1t2tSj

@barnagroup • November 20, 2019

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