XPastor tries to help churches by providing some of the essentials for running a church—items like job descriptions, employment applications, review forms and church policies. Below is the Sabbatical Policy from Bel Air Presbyterian Church in Bel Air, California.

1. Purpose

Bel Air Presbyterian Church approves the policy outlined below in order to:

  • Provide its pastors with opportunities for study and reflection, so that they might fortify their relationship with Christ and strengthen their ministries.
  • Show appreciation for our pastors’ dedication and hard work on behalf of Bel Air Presbyterian Church.

2. Eligibility and Length of Sabbatical

Pastors will be eligible to apply for Sabbatical Leave after each seven years of full-time pastoral service at Bel Air Presbyterian Church. Pastors can choose either a six-month Sabbatical at full salary or a one-year Sabbatical at half salary.

3. Conditions and Requirements of Sabbatical

The specific conditions and requirements of a pastor’s sabbatical—including any proposed curricular or work projects—will be negotiated with the Personnel Committee and approved by Session. Interested pastors should submit a short memorandum describing their proposed sabbatical to the Personnel Committee at least one year prior to when they would like their sabbatical to begin. The memo should include recommendations on how to minimize the impact of the pastor’s absence on the church and its ministry.

4. Commitment of Continued Service

Pastors will accept sabbatical on the explicit condition that they will continue to service Bel Air Presbyterian Church full-time for a period of two years following the conclusion of their leave. Pastors who take up to six months sabbatical at full salary (or twelve months at half salary) will commit to at least three more years at Bel Air Presbyterian Church.

5. Vacation

Vacation will not accrue during the time the pastor is on sabbatical.