Thursday, October 4, 2018

Hey Fletch … I just finished reading “The Senior Pastor and Executive Pastor Team” by John Hawco on XPastor. You posted his entire dissertation and it is awesome! Thanks so much for sharing the entire dissertation!

DRF—The goal of XPastor is to provide great articles, even entire dissertations, on vital topics for church leaders. I’m so pleased that you found the article “awesome.” John was gracious to include me as one interviewed for his dissertation. 

He begins his work by stating:

The senior pastor is an accepted icon in the multiple-staff church. The executive pastor, on the other hand, often meets with a quizzical, “What does he do?” On the church scene for over twenty years, there is still no common definition or job description for the executive pastor, nor is it universally accepted that an “executive pastor” is biblically permissible. The meaning of the title ranges from church business administrator to traditional assistant pastor to a full senior associate pastor. Various leadership and relational analogies have been used to try to explain this executive pastor officer. Most executive pastor positions have come to exist through church travail, and their job descriptions have been invented from within the organization.

Let’s remember that John’s work was written in 2005. Back then the XP role was just emerging into the mainstream. In the intervening years, the XP position has grown into churches of all sizes around the country. Some church planting teams are comprised of a preaching pastor and executive pastor. Two-thirds of churches with 500 in attendance and a $1 million budget have an XP or equivalent in their churches. Churches over 1,000 regularly have an XP. 

From 2005 to the present, the XP role is now common in church life.