Position/Salary Guidelines for Shared Ministry/Coordinators of
Lay Ministry Staff persons
Consultant, trainer, and
author, Jean Morris Trumbauer of Trumbauer
Consulting and Coaching advises her clients that:
1) That the position of Director of Shared Ministry (or Lay Ministry Director)
is a PROFESSIONAL and not a clerical position.
2) That the salary of the Director of Shared Ministry should be at least
equivalent to other professional ministry salaries (and prorated for amount of
time worked) - equivalent to perhaps the Director of Christian Education or
Faith Formation, for example. In the Midwest the top range in some congregations
is over $40,000 FTE plus benefits. In checking with several Directors of Shared
Ministry in 2001, Jean discovered that the salary ranges in the larger and more
active churches was between the mid-twenties and mid-thirties (plus benefits)
3) Jean stresses that benefits besides health care, vacation, and a pension
package, must include money for continuing education and for purchase of library
and resource materials. In addition, many churches secure some consulting or
coaching assistance to assist the Director of Shared Ministry and the leaders of
the congregation as they initiate a Shared Ministry Program.
4) Trumbauer suggests that the position report to the Senior Pastor or to the
Pastoral Administrator if that person oversees the work of the Professional
Ministry staff (the latter situation is often true in Roman Catholic Parishes).
Leadership Network's Salary Survey ...
Since their inception, Leadership Network forums have been a place where
peers are able to share mutual strengths, concerns and solutions. In many of the
forums that I have attended over the years, we conducted informal salary surveys
of the participants. This was usually done in a crude way, such as passing a
blank pad around the room with various forum groups recording slightly differing
Even with this crude methodology of collection, many participants
considered this data to be invaluable when compared to other compensation
1. It came from a group of churches they considered peers. In other
surveys, they felt that the data, even though from a larger sample, gave too
much weight to churches that were not growing.
2. The forum group of churches had similar needs when it came to facility
and ministry expansion that affects staffing levels and other ministries.
3. The data came from churches they wanted to be like and so they wanted
to know in detail how they compared with each other.
In late 2001 and early 2002, we gathered compensation data from a very
select group of churches with more intentionality than in previous years. We
hand selected a representative sample of churches that we considered to be some
of the best in the country. We tried to balance the sample by denominational
background, regions of the country and context within their region, as well as
the tenure of the senior minister.
By no means is the data as scientific or statistically valid as an
advanced, expensive survey undertaken by a university researcher. Our approach
was to gather data from churches with good practices and then create a report
from which other churches could learn.
The following summary report has some highlights of the findings.
Church Size and Income
- The average church size was 3,700 in weekend worship attendance.
The range was from 1,150 to 17,000 and the median size was 3,300.
- The average church income for regular giving was $4,986,834. Almost all
of the churches were over budget last year.
- The average number of regular weekend worship services was slightly
- The average for total giving by the congregation was $7.4 million.
- Based upon these figures, the average gift per attendee for the year was
In most instances, giving amounts were correlated to church size.
The survey asked for cash salary plus housing allowance for
various staff roles. It did not include other benefits that are often a part of
a minister's total compensation package. The figures were all over the place and
had no correlation to size. The figures below are all averages.
- Senior Pastor - $124,831 (range was from $74,000 to $210,000)
- Executive Pastor - $91,846 or approximately 75% of the senior pastor
- Church Business Administrators - $77,080
- Worship Pastor - $71,794
- Small Groups Pastor - $54,449
- Teaching Pastor, other than Senior Pastor - $59,983
- Equipping Pastor - $58,748
The survey also examined about 20 other roles including part time roles.
Benefits Section- All the churches provided medical insurance
- Two-thirds provided disability insurance
- Three-fifths provided life insurance and cell phones to staff
- Slightly over half provided dental insurance
- Half provided sabbatical leave and book allowances
A more complete discussion of benefits is also included in the full
We wanted to know what the churches used as a guideline
for salary raises within the past year and we asked for the average annual
percentage increase given. Please note that this is a highly subjective number
due to many factors.
The average increase for cash salary was 4.3% for all staff. The range for
the averages was from 0 to as high as 10%.
In addition, approximately 25% of the churches had some bonus structure in
How should you use these numbers?
Use them as a means for comparison and norming when working through your
salary and benefits plan. Do not use the survey as the final solution.
Regional factors, cost of living factors, as well as experience and tenure
must be considered when establishing compensation plans.
Several times each year I have telephone conversations with members of
governing boards concerning issues of compensation, benefits and the retention
of key staff members. Our conversations not only deal with financial
compensation, but also with non-financial ways to improve staff morale and well
being. Most congregations fail to realize how valuable staff are for
accomplishing their congregational mission.
LN Recommends Carol Childress has found several good resources this month:
Christianity Today has a number of good articles on salary and staff
compensation at: www.ChristianityToday.com/cgi/texis/webinator/search4/?query=salary+survey
Other groups that conduct compensation surveys include:
- The National Association of Church Business Administrators (www.nacba.net
- The Institute for Church Leadership (www.iclonline.com
From Explorer at Leadership Network
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