The preacher boy has now been on this road to full-time ministry for a while since his call. He’s got the clothes, perfected his preaching craft and bagged himself a wife. It’s now time to take the final steps from being a preacher boy to becoming a preacher man.
Since how well a man preaches is the ultimate measure of his worth as a pastor, the preacher boy who wants to catch the eye of the senior pastors and get on the fast tract to his own pastordom must take (or invent) every possible opportunity to preach. There’s no such thing as a bad time for a sermon with these guys. Every meal, ballgame, commercial break, or pause for breath must be used as a reason for the preacher boy to give a “brief challenge.” This is not usually brief and the real challenge is keeping track of how many new doctrines are being created. After months and years of plaguing everyone around him with alliterated aspersions, the preacher boy will head for…
This stamp of fundamentalist approval is paramount in the process. To get it, each preacher boy must do his best to be louder and more outrageous than the others in hopes that he will be noticed as the next up and coming great man of God. Inevitably, a few of the loudest and most obnoxious will, in fact, get noticed and be slated for one of the Yearly Ordination Council And Eating Contest positions. In fundy circles this means that the pastor gets together a panel of his cronies who will quiz the young man about vital Scriptural issues like the proper interpretation of the role of China’s military in Daniel’s eschatology. More important than what is discussed, however, is who is on the panel. The preacher boy will need names to drop when he goes for…
While some preacher boys will take a junior position as assistant or associate pastor, there’s an alarming frequency in fundyland of young men making their moves straight into the senior pastorate. One day you’re a Pastoral Ministries graduate who is flipping burgers and preaching at strangers on street corners; the next you’re king of all you survey with a clothing budget and the power to invoke God’s judgment on all who oppose you. It’s nice work if you can get it.
If you’re not lucky enough to be chosen by an established church there are other options. You could, for example, move to Arizona, start your own crazy cult church, and make a name for yourself on YouTube videos. Or so I’ve heard.