Robert Mullins said he saw a tweet recently that probably hit home for a lot of pastors.
“It said, ‘It’s Monday. Don’t resign today,’” related Mullins, president of the 2022 Alabama Baptist Pastors Conference and pastor of Crossroads Community Church in Elmore. “It resonates with a lot of folks right now.”
It’s been a tough season for pastors, he said, noting the workplace trend that has been called the Great Resignation.
The Great Resignation
“There is a massive turnover, massive shift in churches right now,” Mullins explained. “Looking at demographics, we knew there would be a point where many pastors left the pulpit. But we didn’t know COVID-19 was coming. We didn’t know churches would get frustrated like they did, that they would cut [pastors] with no severances, or that pastors would stand up in a pulpit on a Sunday and say, ‘That’s it; I’m done.’”
It’s “really unprecedented,” Mullins added.
That’s why this year’s Alabama Baptist Pastors Conference theme is “In Courage, Encourage: Loving and Leading the Body of Christ.”
“In these crazy days pastors seem to need encouragement more than ever before,” Mullins noted. “Encouragement is essential for pastors particularly, not only to give out, but to receive. It takes courage sometimes to do that. It takes courage to get up when you feel depressed, to press on when you feel beat down.”
The conference is set for Nov. 14 at Shades Mountain Baptist Church in Birmingham.
‘Encouraged and equipped’
“We want to encourage pastors where they are in ministry to press on and keep going and just be an encouragement to them,” Mullins added. “We want them to be able to relax, to be able to feel encouraged and equipped. It’s about pastors getting encouragement from the Holy Spirit from some other pastors out there.”
Those scheduled to speak are:
- Ken Adams, pastor of Crossroads Church in Newnan, Georgia
- Mark Clifton, senior director of church replanting and rural strategy for the North American Mission Board
- Fred Luter, pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans.
- Sterling Lee, pastor of First Baptist Church in Pearl City, Hawaii
- Jeff Iorg, president of Gateway Seminary in Ontario, California.
- Ed Litton, pastor of Redemption Church in Saraland.
The conference will be structured with long breaks to give pastors time for fellowship. Lunch featuring a panel on pastoral leadership and encouragement for the “daily grind” will be provided. A special supper for bivocational and small church pastors also will be available. Registration is required for both meals. Pastors can register at albaptistpc.com.
“We want guys to come in who are tired and be refreshed so they can press on,” Mullins said.
For more information, visit albaptistpc.com.
Presenting sponsors for this year’s Pastors Conference include: