The Competent Pastor: Skills and Self-Knowledge for Serving Well
Ronald D. Sisk
What does it mean to say that a pastor is competent? And how does a competent pastor function? This book is intended to help pastors, seminarians, and lay people who work with pastors understand and answer these two questions.
Competence in ministry is a moving target. A ministry technique that works in one parish may not work in another. What works today may not work five years from now. But a competent pastor will be able to adapt to changing locations and changing times. A competent pastor will be happy in her job—or able to figure out why she’s not happy and how to move forward. A competent pastor won’t get stuck—or when he does get stuck, he’ll know what steps to take to get unstuck. Competence, defined by author Ronald Sisk as “the ability to do what needs to be done,” requires ministers to understand themselves and others and to keep a realistic perspective on their lives. Competent pastors function by moving toward this kind of understanding and perspective.
Praise for the Book
“Reading this book felt like a carrying on stimulating dialogue with an exceptionally gifted pastor. Ron Sisk has not written just another book about pastoral ministry. He literally defines it as crucial work that requires both passion and vulnerability. I would like to walk into any pastor’s study and see this book open on the desk.” —G. Lloyd Rediger
“Wondering whether it is possible to love God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength; be true to yourself; faithful to family; loyal to friends; and lead a congregation to be a healthy, spiritually alive, missionally motivated community? Ron Sisk, caring companion and resouceful guide, details how success as pastor—and as Christian—lies in our life-long response to God’s grace in Jesus Christ.” —Julieanne S. Hallman
“Sisk revives the genre of practical theology as ‘hints and helps from an experienced pastor.’ Readers will find Ron Sisk to be a wise and compassionate companion for the journey.” —Herbert Anderson
“Whether a new servant of Christ or a veteran in the pulpit, all pastors can benefit from having this book on their desk, not on their shelf.” —Jill M. Hudson
About the AuthorRonald D. Sisk served as a pastor for twenty years before becoming a professor of homiletics and Christian ministry at North American Baptist Seminary. He lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, with his wife, Sheryl, and his son, Douglas.
Alban No. AL294
paper, 192 pages
($14.40 for members)