Christian Chronicle

Serving Jesus and soft drinks — at 38,000 feet

From flight attendant to funeral director, secular jobs help pay the bills for bivocational ministers.

By Bobby Ross Jr. | The Christian Chronicle

NEWNAN, Ga. — On a typical Sunday, Alan Henderson shares God’s word with 100 to 110 souls at the Newnan Church of Christ, about 35 miles southwest of Atlanta.

The rest of the week, the part-time preacher lives out his faith from a different vantage point: high above the clouds as a flight attendant for Frontier Airlines.

“Even in my announcements, I take some liberties,” Henderson, 60, said of reflecting his love for Jesus in the air.

Related: On the menu: bivocational ministry talk

“I’ll do the spiel I’m supposed to,” the father of two explained, “but in the end, I’ll add something like, ‘And until we see you next time, we remind you to be kind, use your words to bless and encourage people around you, laugh frequently, take care of each other, love your neighbor, and don’t spend too much time watching the news.’”

As a bivocational minister, Henderson serves his home congregation in a vital way while earning additional income and health insurance benefits through a secular profession.

“I’ve been bivocational and trivocational,” said Henderson, who still mows a handful of yards for a lawn care business he and his son Josiah, 20, began several years ago. Alan and Lanita, the preacher’s wife of 38 years, also have an older son, 29-year-old Levi.

Read the full story.

This story appears in the January edition of The Christian Chronicle.

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