Our Finance Committee has wisely asked the staff to try to express what we do for outreach beyond the walls of the church as a percentage of our time. Here is my account.
One national study suggests that full-time protestant pastors spend 6% of their time on denominational matters outside the local church and in the community. I would say this figure is accurate for the way I spend my time, plus or minus 2%.
Some of my denominational time is spent at district events, district committee meetings, and meeting with other pastors to exchange ideas and support. Some of my time is offered beyond the local church as a trained member of a Church Transformation Team. I am part of a cadre of lay and clergy persons in our Conference trained by Plowpoint. Plowpoint is an organization, contracted by districts, whose mission is to heal, restore, and equip local churches so that they may move through conflict, lack of vision, and engage a broken and hurting world as instruments of the Gospel. I receive no payment other than mileage reimbursement for this service to the wider church.
Other portions of my time spent in outreach have included, taking persons to the hospital for emergency treatment, administering the Helping Hands Fund for people in need, and presiding over funerals for families in the neighborhood who have turned to the church in their time of grief.
The Sunday offering plate, even when it pays for salaries and office space, quite often travels outside our walls. Thanks as always for your generous giving that helps spread the love of Christ in to our world.