From the President

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117599-hard-callingThe spring 2014 issue of Leadership Journal had a powerful article by J.R. Briggs, Transforming Failure: How God used a painful season of ministry to change my life.

The article posts these difficult statistics about the tough calling that pastors have today:


Hard Calling

    • 80% of pastors are discouraged in their role as pastors.
    • 40% of pastors seriously considered leaving the pastorate in the past three months.
    • 50% of pastors say they are unable to meet the demands of their job and are so discouraged that they would leave the ministry if they could, but have no other way of making a living.
    • For every 20 pastors who go into ministry, only one retires from the ministry.
    • 25% of pastors have been forced out or fired from their ministry at least once.
    • 45% of pastors say they've experienced depression or burnout to the extent that they need to take a leave of absence.
    • Of 1,050 pastors surveyed by the Schaeffer Institute, every one of them—100 percent—had a close associate or friend from seminary who had left the ministry because of burnout, conflict in their church, or from a moral failure.
    • 70% of pastors say they do not have a single close friend, and the same percentage say they have lower self-esteem than when they entered the ministry.
    • Denominational health insurance agencies report that medical costs for clergy are higher than the average professional group.

These are just a few of the reasons Asian Access does what we do. And, imagine, most of these stats are from America so the pressures by many of those we serve under the threats of persecution and pressure are even more intense! By investing in the lives in key pastors, a few at a time, we see lives renewed, a deeper walk with Christ empowered, leadership strengthened and both disciple-making leaders and movements reproduced.

Sponsor a PastorYou can come alongside and help. Pray for your pastor and encouraged them. Pray for pastors suffering from persecution. If you are a seasoned, veteran pastor, contact us. You could encourage our friends who often say, “Joe, please send us seasoned veteran pastors. We have no spiritual fathers!”

Finally, you can sponsor a pastor and help fund their renewal. For more information on this click here: Sponsor a Persecuted Pastor.

How do you cope with challenges and pressures? Your story can help us know how to better equip leaders in Asia! Please share…


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More Information

  • According to Leadership Journal - the article and statistics were adapted from Fail: Finding Hope and Failure in the Midst of Ministry Failure (IVP, 2014).
  • First image courtesy Leadership Journal/Christianity Today



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Joe Handley | My bio
handley joe 2021 headshot8834 lr 300x300pxJoe joined Asian Access as president in 2008 and has logged many miles traveling across the Asian continent. One thing he has learned is to platform other leaders. In this blog, he hopes to share some of their stories that will encourage you to engage with Asian Access that strives to change the few, who change the many.

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