Posted by: watchman | February 26, 2009

Mad Church Disease: a scare

Anne Jackson gave me a scare.

I finally received my copy of Mad Church Disease by Anne Jackson. It is a real must read for ministers. The book is about pastoral burnout. Anne shares very persoanl refelctions on her own ministry experiences, and how her ministry experience has affected her family life.

The scare I got came right off the bat in Anne’s introduction. She tells a few stories about growing up as a PK. She watched her father go through a series of terrible church experiences, and the affect it had on her lead to major problems in her late adolescent years.

After reading her story, I realized that my son is only 17 months old, and his father has already been through one of these. If watching a dad go through this has the same affect on him as it does on other PKs, I may be setting up my son for future difficulty.

That is scary.

One of the things that I wish churches would remember is that going about making leadership decisions, is that these decisions have a profound affect on people – real people. Decisions affect pastors. Decisions affect pastors spouses. Decisions affect pastors’ families.

Now, I have always reiterated that some pastors need to be fired. Moral failures, incompetence, and lack of chemistry can all be legitimate reasons for making a change in leadership. However, there are fail safes in our faith, that are supposed to limit the damage caused by such a change. In my experience, a good skim ready of Matthew 18 would have been nice.

Have you heard of a pastor’s family being affected by a dismissal or by burnout?



  1. You shouldn’t be afraid.

    Yeah, those things jacked with me.

    But they also gave me an insatiable desire to bring unity to the church, to protect and love and challenge the church — one I don’t think I’d have without seeing all the bad things.

    Don’t be afraid.

  2. Just was revisiting this.

    If you finished MCD, and care to leave a review on Amazon, that would be fab. I think reading a review from your perspective would touch many people.

    Thanks 🙂

  3. Thank you so much for the review!

  4. My pleasure! I hope more people are able to read and experience the reality of your very important subject.

  5. […] Corey’s comments on Mad Church Disease […]

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