Jump directly to the Content

SWEET MUSIC FROM A SECOND FIDDLE

The troubling question can come any time: "Just what is it that you do at your church? Are you the preacher?" Senior ministers, unlike associates, aren't bothered by this question. "Yes, I am," they confidently reply.

But as an associate minister, my very self-respect is challenged by this question. Immediately I'm confronted by an array of possible responses.

Humorous: "I am the preacher boy" (remember to laugh).

Descriptive: "I work with youth and have pulpit responsibilities" (and don't give many details).

Succinct: "I am the associate minister" (fewer details).

My favorite: "I am one of the ministers at the Raleigh Church" (no details).

Kidding aside, despite the proliferation of multiply staffed churches in the past generation, most people still think in terms of having one preacher who has a bunch of helpers. The other ministers may be important, but since they aren't "the main man," well-meaning parishioners continue to ask associates, "When are you going to get your own church?"

Whether ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
Violent Sermon Criticism
Violent Sermon Criticism
From the Magazine
The Woodstock Generation Swallowed Me Up and Spit Me Out
The Woodstock Generation Swallowed Me Up and Spit Me Out
One summer in a hippie commune soured me on the ’60s counterculture. God met me in my disillusionment.
Editor's Pick
Visitation Is Still Our Vocation
Visitation Is Still Our Vocation
We may face new challenges, but the heart of our calling remains the same.
close