It is coming up to 25 years since I began working as a pastor in 1997. I started my ministry in Zimbabwe, then South Africa, and here in the United Kingdom. So, technically, I have worked in three divisions.
I am doing my Doctorate of Ministry project with Andrews University’s multi-cultural, multi-ethnic cohort. We are focusing on diversity, which links with my work as the Church Growth and Mission Coordinator.
My doctoral project addresses the question, “How can we help position new initiatives to engage more effectively with people within a changing UK context?” I am trying to find the connecting point for mission outreach in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic setting.
A master’s degree professor used to say pastoral ministry is about journeying with people. You never travel the whole distance with an individual; you join people on their journeys. A faithful pastor’s job is to walk alongside people and provide support.
Deep friendship in ministry is one of the keys to a long-term healthy ministry. I have friendships with retired ministers who I call to ask for advice. At the same time, I turn to younger pastors for advice too. So, it is about making cross-generational friendships.
Sometimes, you develop spiritual connections with others, and those are the connections you should pursue. Make time for them. The people with whom you share a deep communion are the ones who will add richness to your life.
To listen to Pastor Wayne’s Inspiration4Ministry conversation in full, visit newbold.ac.uk/podcast.
|Written by Pastor Wayne Erasmus, Church Growth and Adventist Mission Coordinator for the South England Conference, and friend of Newbold.|