Why Part-Time & Bivocational Aren’t the Same Thing

Have you ever wondered why some people associate bivocational with “part-time” or why others relate time to effort?

I know for me, it’s easy to perceive the answers through a marketplace lens; however, when we talk about bivocational ministers, we ultimately discover a new lens altogether.

First off, when I say “part-time” in a ministerial context, I’m referring to pastors who balance multiple “full-time” loads inside and outside the church. The specifics may differ, but in general, a part-time pastor is a bivocational pastor who has accepted two or more vocations.

shutterstock_202214332_0With that said, I strongly believe pastors should never be labeled “part-time” since it’s not possible to limit pastoral responsibilities to 20 hours a week…not to mention the term is widely misunderstood.

Cause truth is: Regardless if a pastor is bivocational or not, every pastor is (or should be) on call 24/7.

True, it may be hard for some to be “on call” depending on their job’s requirements; however, just because a pastor may juggle multiple jobs doesn’t mean he lacks the time or energy to put in a full-time effort at church. Rather, it simply means he has to be resourceful in how he stewards his time, whether investing in rest and family at designated intervals or temporarily sacrificing personal conveniences to develop people and new skill sets.

At the end of the day, whether a minister is bivocational by choice or necessity (i.e. financial limitations and/or a specific seasonal call of God), the point is “part-time” pastors still carry full-time responsibilities.

And in a time when living costs are increasing and church membership is decreasing, the reality is bivocational ministers are becoming more essential in leading the church while modeling its purpose outside of it.

No wonder many bivocational pastors consider their greatest call to be on call regardless of where they’re at.

Stay tuned next time when we’ll dive into a brand new series on bivocational profiles.

Cover photo from www.bivocationalpastor.com and www.sojo.net

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