Teleios, Inc., in cooperation with Dallas Theological Seminary (DMin Department) conducted a survey to examine pastors wellbeing, personal humility and professional will. We included pastors graduated from four Bible-believing seminaries: Dallas Theological Seminary, Denver Seminary, Westminster Theological Seminary and the Master’s Seminary.
We received 90 responses (9% response rate). Most participants were: male (100%), between 56-65 years old (34%), in ministry for >30 years (37%), serving as head pastor (80%), and in a non-denominational church (47%).
Our survey found that approximately 80% of pastors agreed or strongly agreed they had good wellbeing, as well as separately contentment, peace, joy and purpose. Further, apart from their work-related worship activities, more than 90% at least a few times a week studied the Bible, prayed and praised God. In addition, at least several times a week approximately 65-70% taught others directly from the Bible and fellowshipped while approximately 20% shared the gospel.
Pastors indicated their self-perceived wellbeing was mostly related to (≥ 90%): remembering God’s truth in contrast to the world, their hope in salvation, praising God and prayer. Further, wellbeing was most helped (≥ 89%) by personal Bible study, their spouse, teaching individuals the Bible, and preaching to their congregation.
Additional findings included a strong sense of purpose highly related to dedication to the church organization (P=0.0004). Further, a strong prayer life was closely associated with personal ratings of humility, not seeking the spotlight, and dedication to the church organization (P≤0.003). In addition, the participants who possessed the best wellbeing were the most genuine in their role as a pastor (P=0.001).
This study suggests Bible-believing pastors generally possess good wellbeing and this characteristic is most associated with: their spouse, studying God’s word, teaching individuals corporately, as well as prayer and being genuine in their pastoral role. Further, humility and dedication to the church was strongly associated with a sense of purpose, humility and prayer.
Other findings from Teleios Research are on our website.
WC Stewart, AC Kleinhans, JA Stewart, LA Nelson
About Teleios – Teleios is a non-profit foundation that seeks to demonstrate the truth of scripture and the Christian faith through scientific methods by providing evidence for the positive results of a biblically-based lifestyle. Prior studies conducted by Teleios have shown that the practice of the Christian faith (praise, prayer, fellowship, service and Bible study) and security of salvation increases well-being while reducing guilt.