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How Does a Pastor Work: A New Podcast from Slate

Check out the new podcast from Slate, called “Working.” One of their first podcasts interviewed Rev. Dr. Howard-John Wesley of Alfred Street Baptist Church in Washington D.C. They ask the question: How does a pastor work?

The podcast includes tidbits such as how the regular workweek of a pastor look like, how Rev. Dr. Wesley does sermon preparation, and the balance of a pastor’s life between counselor, organizational leader, and moral and spiritual advisor. Rev. Dr. Wesley discusses the difficulties of not being able to be “off” — he’s the pastor whether he’s at the grocery store or at a wedding reception — and the impact that has on his life.

Rev. Dr. Howard-John Wesley’s experience may be relatively exceptional. He works in a mega-church with a large staff and considerable resources, which is not the experience of many pastors within the United States. However, many of the struggles and issues he deals with will seem similar to pastors in other environments. How does the podcast align with your experience (if you are clergy) or your perceptions (if you are non-clergy)?

Ellen Childs
About the Author
Dr. Ellen Childs holds a Ph.D. in sociology from University of Notre Dame. She is Website Director at StudyingCongregations.org