School of Behavioral Sciences


Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)


Dwight Rice


burnout, self-care, perceived social support, pastor, clergy, southern baptist




Burnout is a phenomenon that impacts many clergy across the world, regardless of denomination. There are many causal factors that lead to burnout, as well as a number of suggested measures for prevention and treatment. With education on burnout increasing, more awareness can and should be given to the subject. As pastors continue to serve their communities and congregations, it is likely that they will have to combat the onset of burnout at some point during their tenure. It is important for both the pastor and the congregation they serve to be aware of burnout and its symptoms, as well as having an action plan for how to respond to the natural stressors associated with the ministry. As one way to combat burnout, this study explored the influence of social support and whether it could serve to reduce the effects of burnout. Self-care was also analyzed as a moderating factor. The research population was pastors serving in the Southern Baptist Conservatives of Virginia. Analysis was conducted in SPSS using Pearson’s r and regression analysis through PROCESS, a system designed for estimating statical models, such as moderation. The following assessments were used to capture the data: Multi-dimensional Scale for Perceived Social Support, Maslach Burnout Inventory, and researcher developed demographic and self-care questionnaires. A positive relationship was found between social support and burnout, with negative relationships being present when accounted for self-care as a moderating factor.

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