Our research team here at Christianity Today International just finished surveying more than 2,000 churches, and next month, we'll be releasing the most comprehensive, up-to-date church salary survey we've ever done. While The 2008 Compensation Handbook for Church Staff is at the printer, here is a sneak peek at some results:

1. If you want to earn more, change denominations.

Briefly, if you want to earn more as a senior pastor, become a Presbyterian.  If you want to earn more as a youth pastor, become a Baptist.

Presbyterian senior pastors earned the most in our survey—their average salary plus housing/parsonage was $78,000—while Baptist senior pastors earned next to last—$67,000. But virtually the opposite was true for youth pastors. Baptist youth pastors earned near the top--$44,000 in salary plus housing—while Presbyterian youth pastors earned near the bottom--$36,000. Why?

The answer comes from two factors: church income and denominational values.

Our research consistently ...

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