The New Pastor’s Handbook

Helopoulos, Jason. The New Pastor’s Handbook: Help And Encouragement For The First Years Of Ministry. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books. 2015.

SUMMARY:
NewPastorshandbookWritten by a seasoned Pastor for the newest of Pastors, author Jason Helpoulos offers sage advice. With chapters devoted to starting the ministry strong, encouragements pertaining to leadership, listening, time, and caring, as well as pitfalls and joys of ministry, many important topics are covered. Each section begins with a scripture, gives guidance, and lends reassurance. In an easy to read, relate-able manner, The New Pastor’s Handbook shares those things usually not learned through textbooks and schooling, but rather through experience.

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
Though not a Pastor, I thought this book was well-written, informative and interesting. The style in which it was written could be useful in any book relating to a new career, activity, or phase of life. The manner was user-friendly, efficiently organized, easily consumed, and welcoming. The wisdom shared would be priceless to someone just starting the path of ministry, in the hopes that it would continue to be passed along. Personally, I found it interesting to read from a church member’s point of view, emphasizing that even Pastors struggle. Definitely the perfect gift for a recent seminarian graduate beginning to shepherd his own flock.

RATING:
4.5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of The New Pastor’s Handbook from Baker Books for my honest review*

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Next

Vanderbloemen, William. Bird, Warren. Next: Pastoral Succession That Works. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Publishing group. 2014.

SUMMARY:
nextEventually every church has to experience change, specifically the changing of the Pastor. William Vanderbloemen and Warren Bird suggest being proactive in the succession rather than reactive. Through conversations, acceptance, reality acknowledgements, and generational difference admissions, Next leads the way to a church being truly prepared for change…

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
It is going to happen…there is going to be a pastoral change in every church. Being ready, or at least cooperative, can help and/ or save a church great distress. Next is a very timely book sharing the differences in generations (half-time Pastors, career changes, Baby Boomer retirements), future options, and the necessity of honest and direct conversations. The three sections of the book clearly define important issues from planning, to being the exception and to transitioning. I appreciated the fact that the goal of this publication is to formulate an idea for the church and make sure most everyone is comfortable with the facts, allowing the church to hold its direction and experience a smooth procession. Interesting enough, these concepts could also be applied to life situations as well.

RATING:
5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Next from BakerBooks for my honest review*