I was talking to someone recently and they mentioned they knew someone who attended so and so’s church. Well this so and so is a known preacher. There are other churches like Robert Schuller, T.D. Jakes, Creflo Dollar, Joel Osteen and alike who are known front men for their mega churches. Locally a man named Ron Phillips enjoys this level of notoriety. These churches parishioners are proud to say I attend Ron Phillips church or Joel Osteens church, etc. Now I ask the question whose church does it belong to? Identifying our churches by our pastors is a very dangerous thing.
Pastors who take ownership of the congregations they serve are missing the point…they are called servants who are subject to change in their ministerial situations. Non denominational churches seem to suffer this problem the most.
We must remember that these men and women who are given charge to local congregations are temp workers. They are there as long as God wants them there.
I belong to the United Methodist Church and our pastors are on a itinerant system where they are appointed by the Bishop and district superintendents to serve in local congregations. This is a system I feel that works well and is a reminder that the pastor is a servant who serves at the pleasure of Christ and it also keeps churches on their toes.
Itenerant system is where pastors can move at the request of the Bishop or on decision of the pastor and the church every 3-5 or more years to new congregations. It helps churches cycle in new ideas and there is no vacancy issues unlike Baptist, Lutheran, etc. churches where a pastor search can take up to 2 years.
There must be a reminder that a pastor is a servant leader who is accountable to God. We must never forget this lest having our churches become a glorious temple to the accomplishments of the men or women who can be corrupted by the power they are given.