Christian Chronicle

On a mission to fill empty pulpits

For John and Carla Moore, addressing the shortage of preachers in Churches of Christ is a priority.

By Bobby Ross Jr. | The Christian Chronicle

DENVER — Low pay and benefits. Overly demanding leaders. Unrealistic expectations.

Full-time ministry in Churches of Christ often doesn’t have the best reputation, contributing to a shortage of candidates to fill pulpit openings.

Numerous current and former preachers across the U.S. cited the negative perceptions — a mix of truth and exaggeration — in a recent Christian Chronicle survey.

Sacred Calling: Read all the stories in the series

Here in Colorado’s capital, John and Carla Moore began work at Bear Valley Bible Institute six years ago with a goal of reversing the trend.

“We came here to do what we love, and that is to try and train preachers and get people excited about ministry,” said John, a Bible instructor.

But the challenge is steep.

The frequent calls John receives from church leaders tell him that.

“Somebody who knows me will call and say, ‘Hey, can you help us find a preacher? We just can’t find one,’” he said. “And they go a year or two without one. … Our students don’t really have any trouble making and finding contacts for places to interview. Now, finding the right fit is another story.”

Read the full story.

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

Featured photo by Audrey Jackson

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