Back at the beginning of 2012, I did some statistical analysis on the age of the clergy in the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church. What is interesting is a lot of the trends I saw are now coming true.
Here are my posts from 2012; Part I; Part II; Part III.
I saw that 49% of the clergy in 2012 were over 55 years. I predicted there would be a tsunami of retirements coming and low and behold there are. Last year we had over 50+ clergy retire and the current rumor (I don’t know the actual number) is that we will have that many if not more. The retiring class for 2017 & 2018 is guaranteed to be in the triple digits. This is unprecedented and could possibly be our new reality.
My number was called and I will be moving in July. I will say goodbye to Indian Trail UMC and hello to Milford Hills UMC. This transition comes because of what I predicted in 2012. I revisited my posts and I am sad to see that some of my predictions have come or are coming true.
As we deal with a dwindling amount of clergy, it will be interesting to see how the cabinet handles these new realities. I wonder if other conferences have dealt with this already? I wonder what solutions they have come up with and are they working?
It would be interesting to get my hands on this information again and see if we have improved our age demographic or if we are looking at even worse numbers. However, I don’t have access to that information, so I’ll just have to wait and see.
CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE PODCAST
The first episode of my new podcast is now up and ready for your listening pleasure. Today I talk with the Rev. Ben Williams. Ben is the senior pastor of St. Mark’s UMC in Raleigh, NC. He was my roommate for two years at Duke Divinity school and one of the best men at my wedding. He is a dear friend and does amazing work at St. Mark’s. This is a great combination to be my first guest on this inaugural episode on this new podcast.
Ben is a graduate of Wake Forrest University and Duke Divinity School. He has been appointed to St. Mark’s UMC in Raleigh, NC for well over a decade now. He is married to Anna and has two children Stuart and Maggie. Besides always looking dapper, Ben enjoys sailing, soccer and cycling. You can follow him on Facebook HERE or on Twitter HERE.
Show notes: Here are some links to some of the things Ben and I talked about.
St. Mark’s UMC Website
Royce and Jane Reynolds Program in Church Leadership
Academy of Spiritual Formation
Please subscribe to this podcast and please leave a review. If you know someone who is on a wonderful and unique adventure in ministry, please let me know. I am always looking for more guests for this podcast so leave a comment with your email and we can connect. (I won’t publish those comments but use them to contact you via email)
The next episode will be with Rob Hill, the state director of the Human Rights Campaign in Mississippi. It is a great conversation about his work in Mississippi but also how he left the ministry to live authentically as a gay man. It will be up on September 19th.
Until then, enjoy your Adventure in Revland and peace be with you.