Christian Pastors and Conferences.
I may step on some of your toes with this one, but that's OK, we are all adults here. I have been in and around ministry for many years. I have served as a student ministry volunteer and pastor, a young adults minister and pastor, associate pastor and an active member and inactive "pew sitter" in some churches. There has been one disturbing trend from my point of view that I can't help but point out, the fact that pastors and ministers go to more conferences and helps conventions than any other trade I know of. Here are some examples from other vocations: I have a friend who is in the military. No conferences, conventions or what ever. Just a lot of on the job training. He continually grows and learns his vocation by doing it and getting instruction from his superiors. Another person that I know very well is a successful electrical estimator and contractor and has been for many years. He goes to one conference a year. That is it. It is a special event for him and he makes the most of it. Why is it that people in Christian ministry must attend more conferences than most other vocations? My thought is this. Is it necessary to attend 5, 6 or 7 conferences a year? I know what conferences are like and what goes on there (of course I have been to many). It's typically a bunch of people who are paid to go there by their church. They are put up in a hotel, eat what they want, talk to a bunch of other guys about their ministries (usually the numbers are fudged on about everything from financials to attendance to staff members) and listen to a bunch of other paid speakers tell you what you may have already heard 20 or 30 times in your ministry life whether through a previous conference, book, disk, pod cast or what not. Why can't we be more content learning in our called environment? Is it really necessary for us to go to every conference by every rock star public speaker or pastor? I don't think so. I believe we should protect our churches, our lives and our vocation by being responsible in our learning and expenditures.