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Pastors in Transition
Why Clergy Leave Local Church Ministry
PAPERBACK; Published: 5/2/2005
ISBN: 978-0-8028-2908-5
Price: $ 26.50
271 Pages
Trim Size, in inches: 6 x 9
Series
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DESCRIPTION
Series: Pulpit & Pew

Whether they leave out of preference for another ministry or due to serious conflict, pastors who relinquish parish ministry face misunderstanding and even hostility. Pastors in Transition brings clarity to this little-examined aspect of the pastorate by examining the main reasons why pastors in five Protestant denominations have left parish ministry.

The fruit of careful sociological research, Pastors in Transition presents the findings of the largest-ever study of recently ended ministries. More than 900 ex-ministers, representing the Assemblies of God, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod, the Presbyterian Church (USA), and the United Methodist Church, were surveyed or interviewed. Besides gathering facts and figures, the book contains personal stories, forthright opinions, and concrete recommendations from former pastors for strengthening parish ministry in the future.

REVIEWS
Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion
"A useful contribution to the literature on clergy careers as it both broadens and deepens the base of information that we currently have on this understudied group. . . One of the best contributions in the field to date."
The Christian Century
"An unprecedented, multidenominational reading of why pastors depart from ministry."
Interpretation
"[Hoge and Wenger's] analysis serves to correct, challenge, and call to anyone considering the current state of ministry. . . It also dispels much of what passes for conventional wisdom."
Louis B. Weeks
"Personal interviews, case studies, statistical research, and practical conclusions — a helpful combination to address the pressing issue of clergy dropouts. Dean Hoge and Jacqueline Wenger provide rich resources for those who oversee ministerial candidacy and the care of pastors at every level. This book also makes good reading for those who are considering ministry."
Carl S. Dudley
"Like mechanics who solve problems by checking under the car, Hoge and Wenger examine current problems of ministry by looking up from the bottom and carefully considering each greasy nut and bolt they find. . . Discovering news both good and bad, they suggest what can be done and when, based on in-depth interviews that are poignant, powerful, and all too real. A must-read for stable and fragile clergy and all the people who work and live with them."