The Church of God in Eastern North Carolina is nearing completion of a house to accommodate the needs of pastors and their families in ministry.
During the ENC State Ministers’ Meeting last fall, it was voted upon to build a Sabbatical House on the property of the Church of God Conference Center in Kenly, North Carolina. Located on a private and peaceful site on the 250+ acres, the dream is about to become a reality.
“Because of the many points of stress that are upon the pastor and his/her family, Eastern North Carolina wants to provide the ministry of a Sabbatical House for a place of rest, peace, and refuge,” said Administrative Bishop Dennis Page. “This house will serve as a getaway for pastors that need rest, marriage/family strengthening, to refocus on ministry direction, and to rethink and recreate vision. If counseling is needed, we will help to provide professional counseling on-site at the house during the visit of the pastor.”
In citing the need for the project, Page listed the following statistics:
• 73% of pastoral couples have not had a full week of vacation in the past (10) ten years
• 45% of pastors say that they’ve experienced depression or burnout to the extent that they needed to take a leave of absence from ministry
• 33% felt burned out within their first five years of ministry
• 45% of pastor’s wives say the greatest danger to their family is physical, emotional, mental
• 80% of pastors say they have insufficient time with their spouse
Page went on to say, “We are very excited about this new ministry provided by the ENC State Office for the well-being and the health of our pastors. This house will help fulfill the measure passed at the 77th General Assembly that reads, ‘We recommend that lead pastors and, at the lead pastor’s discretion, also staff pastors, take a sabbatical for the purposes of personal spiritual renewal and marriage/family strengthening.’”
The ENC Sabbatical House will be completed, dedicated and in full operation in September 2019. General Overseer Tim Hill is scheduled to assist in the dedication ceremony.
Page concluded that because of the generosity of many people, the house is expected to be dedicated debt free with an endowment to provide a sabbatical system for pastors at no cost.
Donations are still being accepted. To donate or to learn more information visit enccog.org.