5 Essential Trends for Pastors

Written by Mariel Villarreal on Jul 15, 2021 in Pastoral Helps

Read time: 3 minutes 

 An interview with the CEO of StartCHURCH

We recently sat down with Nathan Camp, CEO of StartCHURCH, to discuss the trends he sees in the Church, pastoring, and leadership in 2021 and beyond. 

StartCHURCH: We're now halfway through 2021, and we are at the tail end of a global pandemic. In your role with StartCHURCH, you hear from a lot of pastors and leaders. Are you seeing any trends in those that are continuing to lead through these challenging times? 

Nathan Camp: Thanks for having me! And to answer your question, yes! 

As I look across the landscape of America, I see five trends that I think are unavoidable for Pastors. Here's why I say unavoidable: many leaders are hoping to "get back to normal." The truth is, the world has changed. That's the reality that every pastor or church leader must face to be fruitful for God's kingdom in moving forward. If we press forward into this new reality, then I believe we will not only survive but thrive in the days ahead. 

Here are the 5 unavoidable trends for pastors: 

1. Digital missions are the future.

Once the pandemic hit, it moved online ministry from a nice-to-have to a have-to-have! This medium is now more relevant than ever, and quite honestly, the future. 

Recently, I was at the Exponential Ventures gathering of innovators in the Church, and I was blown away by the passion, creativity, and fruitfulness of those who are seizing the digital world as their ministry. It confirmed how much the new world's mission field is promulgated online. I would go so far as to say, if you are not on the cutting edge of missions with a digital presence, then you are falling off the back of missions into old mediums that will lose their effectiveness in the coming days.

2. Stewardship responsibility is a necessity.

As soon as giving slowed in 2020, many churches realized they had little to no savings or transparent fiscal reporting.

An unavoidable reality for the future of churches and ministries is the absolute requirement for accurate tracking, reporting, and leadership in financial management. Those already embracing this mandate were ahead of the curve when the going got tough. We saw this time and again in our StartCHURCH Bookkeeping department. Churches with established stewardship skills and accurate reporting quickly navigated the change in giving cycles. In fact, we found many of our StartCHURCH Bookkeeping clients actually grew over the last 18 months because they had the information they needed to lead with wisdom.


3. Isolation in ministry is no longer an option.

At the outset of the pandemic, it became readily clear who was connected to a tribe and who wasn't. Those connected to a community of pastors—through a denomination, church planting organization, association, or something similar—rapidly found answers and solutions to the unfamiliar challenges before them. 

However, those who were isolated quickly found themselves falling behind as they tried to answer each challenge alone. 

Every pastor right now needs to ask, "Who am I running with that is helping me stay strong and fruitful in the days to come?"

4. Today's challenges are not solved by yesterday's answers.

As soon as the pandemic hit, our phones started going crazy with calls from pastors and ministry leaders facing new challenges that they didn't learn in seminary or bible school. At StartCHURCH, we pivoted to producing new video courses and tools to help in the new reality of ministry. We created courses on establishing ordination programs, creating a benevolence ministry, how to go digital, and more. 

Moving forward, pastors cannot rely on what they have known. The unavoidable truth is that you must get new tools in your tool belt if you want to build into the future. 

5. Spiritual readiness is a must.

With the chaos of 2020, a great demand fell on pastors to draw nearer to Jesus than many had in years. The amount of trauma their churches experienced and the upheaval their cities endured caused pastors to be sure of their calling, empowered in their souls, and active in their faith. 

I am more convinced than ever that the "business as usual" tenor in so many churches will no longer relate to a lost world. It's an unavoidable fact that we must be intimate in our love for Jesus, sacrificial in our service, and passionate for the mission of Christ to reach the world around us. 

SC: Do you have any final thoughts to encourage pastors, ministers, and church leaders?

NC: I truly believe the best days of the Church are ahead. I have been so inspired to see more churches planted in 2020 using StartCHURCH than ever before in our 20-year history! More and more men and women are stepping up and saying YES to God's call on their lives—no matter the circumstances. It's our great privilege to come alongside them and cheer them on as they launch into their God-given dream. If you feel God is calling you to start a church or ministry, there's never been a better time to start.

The Future is Bright

As you move forward into your calling, our team of church planting specialists would love to serve you. Whether you need help building a solid foundation for your church or you’d like a ministry-focused bookkeeper to take care of your finances for you—we are here to help.

Please give us a call at 877-494-4655 or click the link below to schedule a call at your convenience. We would be honored to hear how we can serve you.


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Raul Rivera

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