Monday, June 22, 2015

The Levels of Leaving

As I've written plenty of times before, longevity matters in ministry.

But, it's unrealistic to believe that you'll be at a church forever.

Every church worker is, ultimately, inly ever an interim minister.

No matter the precise timetable, there are progressive levels of leaving.

Open. Available. Looking. Legacy.

Open - You're not ready to leave, but you've achieved enough things that you'd look back with pride. Now, if you're dream job found you, you'd be open to exploring the option and possibly jump at it. Ideally, I wouldn't imagine someone would be at this point during the first four or five years of their placement.

Available - Now you've available to move on, but are more than content to stay. By now you've established a culture you're happy with and have an increasing awareness of any opportunities which may be on the horizon. Now, if a fantastic opportunity arises, they don't have to knock on your door, you'll give it a sniff. Ideally, I wouldn't imagine that you'd get to this point until you're seven or eight years in.

Looking - Once you've been in a place a decade, having cycled through a few generations, you might move towards to next stage in leaving - Actively looking. Now, while you'd loved to stay, if a healthy succession plan is in place, you can move to the next step freely.

Legacy - You don't leave cleanly, but - again, with a healthy succession plan in place - transition into another complementary ministry at the same church/denomination.

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