Skip to main content
Educational Resources FeedSynergy

Life in the Parsonage Column

Pastor Laird Baldwin desires to encourage pastors and ministry leaders and their families. If you have a particular topic or dilemma related to pastors or ministry leaders’ families that you would like to see addressed, please email Pastor Laird. Your anonymity would be protected. Please let us know if  a column of this nature might be of help to you, and we can include it in future issues of Synergy.

Pastor Laird shares his thoughts about the column :

Life in the parsonage can be difficult. In many ways, a pastor’s family is as ordinary as anyone. On the other hand, the parsonage can be a lonely and isolated universe at times. “Actually, I do need someone to talk to,” confided one pastor’s daughter, “It’s hard to figure out who to talk to during times like this.” Opening up one’s feelings to church people is not necessarily an option because, as she explained, “It’s not appropriate to talk to them sometimes. And friends from work could never understand what in the world I’m talking about when it comes to ministry.”

I’ve begun to consider whether I could provide an outlet for people like that young lady. Might there be a place for a column that shares the insights, struggles, challenges, and victories of life in the parsonage? The fact is that families whether in the parsonage or on the mission field do feel at times as if there is no one with whom they can talk and just be themselves. They need a sounding board, not the board of deacons. I’m no “Dear Abby” and I make no pretense to having answers to all the problems a pastor’s family can face. Still, after more than thirty years in the ministry, and having led our own family through the ministry mine field, I have a certain amount of experience. Besides, I have an endless supply of resources. One granddad, my father-in-law, two uncles, a brother-in-law, and a nephew have been or are now pastors, and two sons-in-law and three brothers-in-law are serving the Lord in other aspects of ministry.

Perhaps a need might be met or a nerve struck. Perhaps we can share a laugh, or someone will say “Yeah, that happened to us, too.” Those of us in the ministry share the unique experience of living in the very public and yet very private life of the parsonage, all while looking to the Lord for daily grace. If this column could make the journey a little easier, the labor a little less wearisome, I will have accomplished my purpose. Meanwhile, may the Lord bless our homes.

Laird Baldwin, pastor
Bible Baptist Fellowship
Brookville, Ohio