What is a Pastor

A pastor leads a congregation of people and is responsible for their spiritual nourishment. They are responsible for assisting in church financial matters and overseeing the management of all areas of a congregation's ministry. They support, oversee and evaluate congregation staff by holding regular meetings to coordinate ministries.

Further duties include ensuring church facilities are functioning, leading religious worship services, providing counseling to parish members, including comforting them when they are distressed, visiting those who are sick, or offering advice on important decisions, performing religious ceremonies such as baptisms, weddings, and funerals, organizing and directing charitable efforts and fostering a sense of community, and composing and delivering sermons.

A pastor should have a strong character with impartiality and compassion for the concerns and struggles of others. He/She should have public speaking skills and the ability to communicate clearly. They earn an average of $44,708 per year. Most denominations require a pastor to complete higher education, such as earning a bachelor's degree in theology or religious studies. Some go through the seminary, theological college, or divinity school.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Pastor. For example, did you know that they make an average of $18.79 an hour? That's $39,092 a year!

What Does a Pastor Do

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a Pastor, we found that a lot of resumes listed 19.7% of Pastors included Community Outreach, while 7.1% of resumes included Spiritual Care, and 5.4% of resumes included Overseer. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

Learn more about what a Pastor does

How To Become a Pastor

If you're interested in becoming a Pastor, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 50.7% of Pastors have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 30.6% of Pastors have master's degrees. Even though most Pastors have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a Pastor. When we researched the most common majors for a Pastor, we found that they most commonly earn Bachelor's Degree degrees or Master's Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Pastor resumes include Associate Degree degrees or Doctoral Degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Pastor. In fact, many Pastor jobs require experience in a role such as Associate Pastor. Meanwhile, many Pastors also have previous career experience in roles such as Senior Pastor or Internship.

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Average Salary
$39,092
Average Salary
Job Openings
77
Job Openings
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Pastor Career Paths

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Average Salary for a Pastor

Pastors in America make an average salary of $39,092 per year or $19 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $58,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $25,000 per year.
Average Salary
$39,092
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How much should you be earning as an Pastor? Use Zippia's Salary Calculator to get an estimation of how much you should be earning.
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Pastor Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Pastor. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Pastor Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Pastor resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Pastor Resume Examples And Templates

Pastor Demographics

Pastor Gender Statistics

male

82.4 %

female

13.4 %

unknown

4.3 %

Pastor Ethnicity Statistics

White

73.0 %

Black or African American

10.6 %

Hispanic or Latino

8.4 %

Pastor Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

55.3 %

French

6.9 %

German

5.7 %
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Pastor Education

Pastor Degrees

Bachelors

50.7 %

Masters

30.6 %

Associate

7.8 %

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High School / GED
Associate
Bachelor's
Master's
Doctorate

Top Colleges for Pastors

1. Emory University

Atlanta, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,306
Enrollment
6,975

2. Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,464
Enrollment
9,639

3. Loyola Marymount University

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$48,522
Enrollment
6,557

4. North Park University

Chicago, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$29,860
Enrollment
1,967

5. Brescia University

Owensboro, KY • Private

In-State Tuition
$22,100
Enrollment
918

6. Saint Thomas University

Miami Gardens, FL • Private

In-State Tuition
$31,830
Enrollment
986

7. Fordham University

Bronx, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$52,687
Enrollment
9,392

8. Duquesne University

Pittsburgh, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$38,178
Enrollment
6,008

9. Southeastern University

Lakeland, FL • Private

In-State Tuition
$25,870
Enrollment
5,570

10. Gardner-Webb University

Boiling Springs, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$32,000
Enrollment
2,010
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Online Courses For Pastor That You May Like

Start Your Traveling Ministry - Itinerant and Evangelistic
udemy
4.8
(370)

Ministry Training Institute. How do you get started with a traveling ministry?...

Prophetic School And Hearing The Voice of God
udemy
4.5
(295)

Learning to Minister in Power With God's Voice...

Customer Service
udemy
4.6
(4,889)

How to Approach New Customers and Maintain Existing Ones...

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Top Skills For a Pastor

  • Community Outreach, 19.7%
  • Spiritual Care, 7.1%
  • Overseer, 5.4%
  • Bible Study, 5.1%
  • GOD, 4.7%
  • Other Skills, 58.0%
  • See All Pastor Skills

12 Pastor RESUME EXAMPLES

Best States For a Pastor

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a Pastor. The best states for people in this position are Maine, California, Hawaii, and Massachusetts. Pastors make the most in Maine with an average salary of $50,826. Whereas in California and Hawaii, they would average $48,304 and $47,542, respectively. While Pastors would only make an average of $47,100 in Massachusetts, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Maine

Total Pastor Jobs:
0
Highest 10% Earn:
$83,000
Location Quotient:
0
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Arizona

Total Pastor Jobs:
0
Highest 10% Earn:
$64,000
Location Quotient:
0
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. California

Total Pastor Jobs:
8
Highest 10% Earn:
$69,000
Location Quotient:
1.66
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Pastors

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