Pastoral administrative assistants help the head pastor of a church become more organized, taking administrative tasks off the pastor’s hands so the pastor can focus more time on visiting the sick, sermon preparation, prayer and other pastoral duties. Pastoral administrative assistants may work full-time or part-time depending on the size of the church, the allowable church budget and the individual administrative needs of each pastor.
The pastor will have his or her administrative assistant make copies, build fliers, write business letters, make phone calls and may input church member giving records into a database. The administrative assistant may make copies of weekly service bulletins; update the weekly service bulletins with upcoming events, create sign-in sheets for group meetings or fundraising events, forward church correspondence to the appropriate departments and act as point of contact for special guest speakers.
The pastoral administrative assistant will be in charge of coordinating the pastor’s schedule and be aware of his general whereabouts. For example, the administrative assistant is in charge of knowing that on Monday, perhaps the pastor will be attending a community pastor luncheon about 60 miles from the church and will be gone from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. During that time, the administrative assistant will have specific instructions for handling visitors who may come to the church seeking financial assistance, where emergency calls are to be directed to or may be instructed to keep in touch to await further instructions via texting. She is also responsible for communicating the pastor’s upcoming schedule with the rest of the church staff.
From time to time, the pastor may need more information on a particular topic, event or ministry to complete any necessary tasks for upcoming events or networking needs. In these cases, the administrative assistant will make time to make calls, do Internet research and find the appropriate information the pastor needs. During sermon preparation, if the pastor is having trouble or is running out of time, the administrative assistant will find statistics or other interesting facts from biblical history, geography and more using the Internet or books from the church library.
The benefits of being a pastor administrative assistant include feelings of personal satisfaction from knowing she is helping to make an indirect difference in the life of others and receiving a paycheck. Larger churches pay more than smaller churches depending on the church budget. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average wage across the nation for administrative assistants overall is $41,650 yearly as of May 2009.
Understand as the administrative assistant to a pastor, you will be exposed to personal and often time-sensitive information including personal identification information of church members and may be privy to certain private circumstances for those seeking pastoral counseling. You will be expected to maintain integrity with open honesty to everyone within the church congregation and staff and uphold certain confidentiality policies.
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