“95% of pastors are losers”?

Note: See the updates at the bottom of this post for important information.

There’s a discussion in my denomination right now about the role of pastoral leadership. Our new president has written a book that essentially argues for the Carver model of board governance, in which pastors are given both freedom and accountability to make things happen.

You could spend days discussing this. One of my concerns is that this model owes a lot more to sports and business models than it does to Scripture. I’m not opposed to all sports and business principles, but I’m concerned that we think about them carefully before we adopt them. I’m also concerned about models of pastoral leadership that see a solo heroic leader as the answer. Again, I am a believer in good leadership, but as David Fitch points out, we already need to rethink the whole lone senior pastor thing. This is a move in the opposite direction.

Last week, a speaker at our regional convention said, “95% of pastors are losers.” I wasn’t there, but from what I can pick up he was saying that 95% of pastors are not made of the right stuff to grow churches the way they need to be grown according to this model.

95%? That number could be a little low!

But here’s the thing. From what I can tell, God can do some pretty amazing things with losers. At least he can in my Bible. They seem to be the group that he likes working with the most, actually.

I don’t doubt that 95% of pastors are losers. To tell you the truth, it’s the other 5% I’m worried about.

related: Leading with a Limp and God’s leadership model

Update: Dr. John Kaiser, president of the Fellowship, has responded to this post. His comment and my response are below.

Update 2: Dr. Kaiser provides the real context of the quote in a comment. Whew, that makes a whole lot more sense. I’m ordering the recording to hear it for myself. My apologies to Dr. Borden and Dr. Kaiser. That’ll teach me for posting on secondhand stuff.

Darryl Dash

Darryl Dash

I'm a grateful husband, father, oupa, and pastor of Grace Fellowship Church Don Mills. I love learning, writing, and encouraging. I'm on a lifelong quest to become a humble, gracious old man.
Toronto, Canada