Rawlings School of Divinity


Doctor of Ministry (DMin)


Johnny Baker


Ministry Burnout, Healthy Support, Healthy Balance


Christianity | Counseling | Religion


Pastoral self-care is critical in minimizing the symptoms of burnout in ministry. Caught up in the daily demands of ministry, pastors are under tremendous stress as they try to serve God’s people in multiple roles in ministry. Often, pastors are called upon to be counselors, preachers, project managers, students, social activists, and a moral compass for those they lead. Too often, pastors are expected to perform duties with superhuman perfection, life and ministry can get so crowded with obligations and emergencies that pastor’s maintenance of a healthy lifestyle can become unbalanced or cease to exist. This research study will complement the literature on pastor burnout, physical and spiritual exhaustion, and ministry resiliency. Research information will be a collection of qualitative and quantitative methods. African American pastors of various ages will be interviewed and surveyed about ministry support systems and balances. The perspectives of the research participants are essential to understanding the complexities involved in the increasing number of persons living and serving without healthy support systems and balance. This research study goals and purpose is to develop and implement personal self-care plans, and self-care practices, pastors will learn how to support and equip themselves to handle the ongoing demands of life and ministry.