Too many ministers are running on empty. Burdened with almost unbelievable loads of duties, they are running out of both physical and spiritual gas. Consequently, congregations suffer from ministry by ministers who are experiencing stress, burnout, and possibly compassion fatigue. First Baptist Hammond realizes how important it is for congregations to set aside time and funds to allow their ministers extended rest and study.
The sabbatical tradition began in the universities at the time when the university was part of the church. The idea was that the university professors needed one year in every seven to become students again and to refresh their spiritual calling.
That is the purpose of Pastor Jeff's sabbatical. Both our congregation and Pastor Jeff can benefit from some time spent apart. This is not a reward for good work or simply a benefit to keep the pastor happy. Neither is it an extension of the normal vacation period. Rather it is an important part of the program of the church and the working relationship between the church and our pastor from which both will draw benefits.
While Pastor Jeff will be available for an emergency, please contact him only in an emergency during this time. Each week the bulleting lists our deacon on call. Please make him your first point of contact during the Pastor's Sabbatical.