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Creating a Pastoral Ministry Budget

If you do not have one already, establish a Pastoral Relations Committee-or Church/Staff Relations Committee for multiple-staff churches. This committee takes the initiative to talk with the minister and represent the minister’s needs. Many ministers are hesitant to discuss their financial needs. Among the Pastoral Relations Committee’s many functions is fostering open communication about the minister’s needs and advocating for fair compensation with other church groups.

Compensation includes cash salary and a parsonage and/or housing allowance, plus utilities. Separate the ministry-related expenses of the church from the minister’s compensation. Ministry-related expense items are church expenses and should be reimbursed by the church up to the budgeted amount; use the accountable plan described elsewhere on this page. The minister should not pay out of his or her own pocket for a book on sermon preparation or a pizza for the youth group. Consult MMBB’s publication, The Laborer Deserves to Be Paid, which makes recommendations on compensation, ministry-related expenses and benefits. An annual compensation planning checklist is included.

Clergy Compensation
In The News

MMBB Outreach team members, Rev. James R. Cook, CFP® and Paul Weers, CFP®, discuss clergy compensation at ChurchExecutive.com.

Recommended Videos

  MMBB Compensation Seminar

Recommended Documents

  • Guide to Pastoral Compensation

    (pdf file: 2 MB)

    The Guide shows church leaders and pastors how to design a fair compensation package and negotiate constructively on this sensitive issue.

  • Compensation Comparison & Analysis

    (pdf file: 161 KB)

    Review compensation data for ABC ministers by region and request a custom analysis of pastor compensation for similar-sized churches in your region.