When a pastor falls

Welcome to a site designed to help both pastors and churches when a pastor falls.  My name is Mike.  I’m an associate pastor at a church in the Dallas, Texas area.  Several years ago we discovered that our senior pastor was having an affair with another woman.  It has been an amazing odyssey- amazingly hard and an amazing blessing. 

After all we have gone through I wanted to share with other churches and pastors what we have gone through and hopefully help others who are unfortunate enough to go through the same thing in their churches.  I will try to address a number of issues and will also walk through some of the choices we made as we realized what had happened in our church family.

I invite your questions and will help in  any way I can if you find your church in this same situation.  You can survive it.  The church can become stronger through this ordeal, but you need to know from the beginning that your church will never be the same again.  But God will see you through it all.

Ok, are you ready?  Let me share with you the path we have walked….

5 responses to “When a pastor falls

  1. My husband is the assistant pastor at our church. We just found out three weeks ago that our pastor was and has had urges for young girls for many years. He recently was accused of such a terrible thing and was too hard to believe. Though at first he denied it, he later admitted that he has touched girls in lascivious ways and that he has a serious problem. He agreed to not return to the altar and that he would seek counseling from a nother pastor and from a psychologist. What makes it even harder is that he is my aunt’s husband. So not only has this destoyed the church but our family. Very quickly our church has emptied and we have very few people left. At this point my aunt, my husband, and I are leading the church (the best we can after such a crisis). What do we do now? We recently bought a church that with the amount of people we have now realistically we won’t be able to pay. Most of the, supposed, leaders have turned their back and left. They are commenting that we’re wrong because we decide to continue working for the ministry regardless of what happened. Many won’t set foot in our church because the pastor still attends even if it’s as a simple member of the congregation. My husband and I feel that it may be best if the pastor left for some time, maybe about a year or so, though it kills me to see my aunt go. She needs us, the family. However, it can be that the church may not grow if the pastor still here. What should we do? Are we right to think as we do?
    Please help. I don’t think I can shed another tear ans it feels like my heart has so many breaks in it it’s unmendable. Thank you for all your time.

  2. I’m a pastor also, I fall with rebellion with my senior pastor , I really regret and repent of my wrong thought and I know my presence in the ministry bring the church into split-up or disunity.

    So it’s good for us to stop a while, look His loves again and in His time, we will come back to the congregation

  3. I see nothing for the affair partner and the minister here. Was he supposed to divorce before he ever touched another? Would a church accept that more readily?

  4. Jess, Great question! I assume by your comment and question you are asking about the minister and the other woman marrying. The real question to ask is this: Would GOD accept that more readily? What the church accepts or disallows really isn’t a question I care about….but what does God think? What does HE say? God says that a man and wife are one flesh and if a minister wants to marry another woman, other than his wife, he has a number of things to deal with, 1. He’s disobeying God’s word, he has to deal with God on that, 2. he is dishonoring his calling and needs to resign from the pastorate if he decides to choose divorce and the other woman, 3. he needs to know that another woman will not solve his problem….he will still be there and he is the problem that would desire such a thing. In other words, finding a new woman solves nothing! He still hasn’t dealt with the sin of his heart that would desire such a thing, 4. he needs to realize he is no longer qualified for the ministry and needs to find another job.

    But you said, “I see nothing for the affair partner and the minister here”. And you are right…I offer nothing for them. Their relationship, the divorce it causes, the church it destroys, the fallout from this is not of God. I offer nothing for them but the promise from God’s word it will be a very difficult life and will not end well. You are right I offer nothing for them…..because it’s not my desire to encourage that relationship. It’s my desire and God’s that the minister repair his marriage, seek forgiveness and honor his promises. That is what would most honor God and help the church. I know it sounds a bit harsh, but having seen all the damage an affair causes I see no hope for the minister and the other woman….it cannot ever end well. The only promise I give them is this- if you choose to divorce, leave your church and marry you will have a very difficult life and regret your choices.

  5. How do you console the wife and children of the fallen minister??

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