The Wounded Minister: Healing from and Preventing Personal Attacks Kindle Edition
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From the Back Cover
Every church deals with personality conflicts and intermittent discord. But in some congregations, there are people who intentionally attack leaders and initiate a devastating form of abuse-pastoral abuse. A growing phenomenon that cuts across denominational lines and impacts every level of ministry, pastoral abuse leaves in its wake wounded people with ruined ministries, broken relationships, damaged health, even shattered faith.
The Wounded Minister examines the reality of evil in churches and the ways in which "clergy killers" or "pathological antagonists" emotionally and spiritually batter pastors. A deft mix of personal experience and in-depth research, this resource will help wounded people of all ministerial positions learn how to recover their broken hearts while rebuilding their lives. As preventive medicine, it also provides guidelines on how sensitive Christians can develop a church structure that protects their pastors from this tragedy. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
- ASIN : B005BOXIJK
- Publisher : Baker Books (July 1, 2001)
- Publication date : July 1, 2001
- Language : English
- File size : 882 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 242 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #617,579 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Understand though, it's not a book filled with whining and complaining, but of relating and learning to heal.
If you've been bullied, pushed out of position, mistreated by lay leaders, committees, other Pastors, or certain members, regardless of where you are in the healing process, you really should read this book. He also suggests a model to set into place to help prevent it from happening again, either to you or to other leaders.
The author recounts some of his own experiences, and discusses how families, marriages, and even the faith of ministers are affected when they are forced to resign to keep their sanity.
He provides lists of categories of unhealthy people, and makes a distincition between pathological antagonists and activists. He addresses the former (and these make up the worse culprits), but offers little help for the latter (most of my personal brushes were with activists).
Those who have suffered will find encouragement. They need to hear that, in most instances,it is not the minister -- but people with unhealthy mental attitudes -- who are usually to blame. This is especially the case in churches that have repeatedly fired their pastors. In many churches, messed up people have become key influneces.
The subtitle, "Healing from and Preventing Personal Attacks" is not really accurate per se. Although the book promotes a healing that comes from understanding, there is little about how to defend oneself from personal attacks (other than encouraging churches to include a "minister's advisory counsel" -- more bureaucracy and another place for troublemakers to dig in as far as I am concerned).
Sections on assertiveness, verbal self-defense, and how to defend oneself against false accusations would have been helpful but were missing. A section on what to ask church leaders when candidating might also have been helpful (although there was some helpful information about what to look for in a church -- and the importance of contacting previous pastors who served there).
The strength of this book is in its empathy, and it might be a good place to start for those who need emotional recovery. Pastors who are currently facing such antagonists will find some help here -- but not enough (in my opinion).
The author mentions that most schools do not train pastors in religious, "street fighting." It is that "street fighting" techinique that could have used more attention here. Pastors need to remember that Jesus was only passive during His crucifixion and trial -- the rest of the time, He fought back with fervor.
Pastors who have been hurt badly will appreciate this book. It will help initiate the healing process.
For me as a pastor, the best portions of the book were the last two sections. Most ministers are aware of the horror stories of clergy being abused by their churches, but far less are aware of traits in their own lives that increase the probability of injury. Also, few ministers who are wounded are aware of the many ways that healing and recovery can occur.
This volume is a must-read for any pastor or associate pastor. If he hasn't experienced yet the heartache of ministry, I am convinced it is not matter of when it comes, but how intensely it comes. This book will help a minister in caring for himself and in supporting colleagues who have been wounded in their service.