How much should a pastor make?

Generally speaking, more than a barista.

That was easy.

100 Different Answers

The reality is that each church addresses this question differently. Some churches look at median household income of the area around the church and uses that as a ballpark.

Other churches will look at public school principal salaries and use that to create a pay scale for pastoral staff.

Still others will use a system based on other matrix like church income, attendance, growth, or any other measurable variable.

1 Helpful Tool

Whether you are looking for a church job or your a church looking for a pastoral candidate, both of you need to pick up this guide. As one who manages HR for a church (and someone who gets paid by a church) I’d say this is a worthy investment.

This simple guide provides compensation worksheets for a number of ministry positions and all you have to do is plug in the relative information about the church (size, location, income, etc) and it will help give you a high/low salary range based on compensation data collected from thousands of ministry professionals around the United States.

As a pastoral candidate, this information will be extremely helpful as you talk with churches, specifically about reasonable compensation packages.

As a church looking to hire, this will help you better assess the adequacy of the compensation package you are offering candidates.

Either way, this is the most helpful resource I’ve come across to answer the “what should we pay the pastor” question.

Do you have some thoughts on pastoral pay? Leave them in the comments below.

Money, Search Committee

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