What would a UMC church look like without a Senior pastor? Or what if a UMC had two senior pastors? Do you think that would help a church or hurt it?

What would it look like if someone asked a parishioner, “Who is your pastor?” And the parishioner replied, “which one?”

JP (our revival speaker) told me to go and read this book, The Starfish and the Spider after we started talking about church and organizations, and the Korean pastors we know.

JP was talking about having a church without a senior pastor. There will be a person that would run the meetings and administration, but does it always have to be same person?

He was summarizing the book saying that starfish and the spider have similar physical characteristics. But if you crush the head of the spider, it’s dead. It can no longer function. With a starfish, you don’t know exactly where the head is. And if you cut of a part of that starfish, the starfish will replace the missing part by regenerating. Simply put, it’s not that easy to destroy a starfish.
If we were to finally capture Bin Laden, and do away with him, it’s not going to destroy Al Qaeda. New leaders will emerge, and the organization will still be strong.
But many churches, when the senior pastor leaves, the church may have a hard time bouncing back.
This really challenged me to look at the way we do ministry. I think it’s a difficult concept to embrace, especially in the Korean church. Simply (and very generally) put, the Korean senior pastor has too much pride. And sharing responsibilities (and even the pulpit) is a lot easier said than done for many Korean churches.

But what do you think?
Do you think a church without a senior pastor would do better than the traditional church hierarchy?

3 Comment on “No Senior Pastor

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