Clergy in Crisis

Most people go into the ministry to make the world a better place by inspiring people to live more Godly and courageous lives. We hope to be both models and mentors to people in their struggles to find meaning out of suffering, cruelty, and frustration. And we want them to feel the wonder and mystery of creation.

But we ministers are human too, and are subject to the same problems and frailties. We struggle with fear, weakness, and despair. We wrestle with doubt about our purpose and direction, and worry that we are not wise enough to serve our congregations through the conflicts and difficulties that arises. Even success has its costs, requiring knowledge and authority that we’re not sure we have.

Ministers have a high burn-out rate. Sometimes it’s due to a crisis in faith, but I think that most of the time it is because we feel that we are failing our congregations. We do not feel that we have the wisdom, the skills, or the discipline we need to lead a church or synagogue. It’s hard to achieve our goals. And that affects all of our relationships – with members and leaders, with our families, and even with God.

It’s a spiritual crisis, but with practical solutions.

I started this blog as a forum for congregational clergy to address the issues and practices that lead to better ministry, to look at common problems and find help and support during crises. As a Clergy Coach, I find that religious leaders rarely take the time they need simply to focus on the bigger picture and to create practical, workable goals. I plan to use this blog to present weekly topics and suggestions to enrich your calling. I hope this blog will help you to become a more centered, skillful and satisfied minister.

About Rev. Alison Hyder

My name is Rev. Alison Hyder and I am a Unitarian Universalist parish minister from Baltimore, MD. I am a professional Clergy Coach, with degrees in divinity and social work. I specializing in parish issues, helping ministers and rabbis determine their goals in areas like pastoral counseling, congregational relationships, worship, administration, and social outreach, and then develop practical steps for improving their skills and achieving their vision. I find that a fulfilling ministry is often the cure to spiritual malaise. The more confident we feel about our abilities, the better our relationships with other people, and the closer we feel to God. I also find spiritual sustenence in music and painting. I am a sometime artist, performer and handyman. Please visit my site at
This entry was posted in burn-out, calling, congregations, goals, God's work, ministry, rabbis, spiritual crisis, Uncategorized, vision. Bookmark the permalink.

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