Good News - August 2019

The National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) launched a new national campaign in July to help con- gregations "show and share God's love" for their pastors in creative and practical ways. The Bless Your Pastor ( cam- paign is part of a larger initia- tive to address financial challenges faced by pastors and is funded by a $1 million, 3-year grant from Lilly En- dowment Inc. The Bless Your Pastor campaign will encourage and equip churches to con- sider creative ways to bless their pastors and to take up a special appreciation offer- ing for their pastors. Some churches may decide to ex- tend this campaign to church staff members, in addition to their pastors. Brian Kluth, national di- rector of NAE Financial Health and spokesperson for Bless Your Pastor, said, "Having been a pastor my- self, with three children and a wife who needed major medical treatments, I under- stand the financial struggles many pastors and their fam- ilies face - and the tremen- dous difference it makes when a congregation shows their pastor they are there for them, all the way, sharing God's love and blessings in practical ways." "Bless Your Pastor is about people in the church sharing their time, talents and treasures to creatively bless their pastors and church staff members," Kluth said. "Some examples can be babysitting, doing car re- pairs, offering low or no cost medical and dental care, sharing a vacation home, and providing gift cards to the pastor and family." Churches that sign up for the Bless Your Pastor campaign at BlessYourPas- will receive a robust toolkit that will make it easy to launch the campaign in their churches. According to national re- search from the NAE, Life- Way and InTrust, most pastors and their families op- erate with limited financial re- sources to meet their current and long-term needs: • 90 percent of pastors feel fi- nancial pressure. • 50 percent make less than $50,000 per year while serv- ing their churches 50-60, or more, hours per week. • Nearly 60 percent of pas- tors do not receive retire- ment or healthcare benefits from their churches. • 3 out of 10 pastors have student loan debt averaging $36,000. The NAE will send an Amazon gift card to the sen- ior pastors of the first 1,000 congregations that take up a special offering for their pas- tors and complete the online form at OUT AND ABOUT 36 AUGUST 2019 Good News • South Florida Edition NAE Launches Campaign to Bless Your Pastor