Resilient Ministry: What it takes to survive and thrive

I greatly enjoyed this article by Megan Fowler and thought you might too:

Resilient Ministry: What it takes to survive and thrive

“What makes pastoral ministry so difficult that, although men feel called to pastoral ministry for a lifetime and spend years training in seminary, they often quit after a few years? What does it take to sustain lifelong pastoral excellence?”


About Tara Barthel

Tara Barthel has served as a Christian mediator for over twenty years. She also maintains her license to practice law in the state of Illinois, formerly focused on high net worth (charitable) estate planning. Tara teaches conflict engagement at the college level and speaks internationally on the topics of redeeming conflict, trauma, mental illness, and addiction. Tara continues to write for publication and occasionally accepts Christian mediation, arbitration, and conflicted organization cases. In addition, she is healing from her recent sexual assault (in 2014) and her trauma-filled childhood (9/10 ACES). Tara is the author of the peacemaking women’s video series "Living the Gospel in Relationships,” the ASL-translated women’s video series "Becoming Who You Already Are," and the co-author of the books "Peacemaking Women" and "Redeeming Church Conflicts.” Tara also enjoys teaching young adults Philosophy of Theology and Rhetoric. Tara earned her law degree, with honors, and her M.B.A. from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She also holds a B.A. in Psychology, summa cum laude, from Augustana College (Illinois). Currently working towards her second Master’s degree, Tara has been married to her husband, Fred, for over twenty-five years and they have two daughters and a very friendly Golden Retriever. To learn more about Tara Klena Barthel, please visit her website: or her public facebook page @tarabarthel.
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2 Responses to Resilient Ministry: What it takes to survive and thrive

  1. Pieter Louw says:

    Jesus gave us the procedures for handling conflicts in Matthew 18 from verse 15. Over almost three decades, I have never found even one church where this is done His way and only one pastor who did it right. The others follow their own protocol. My experience spans three continents and 28 denominations – I am a freelance (unsupported) missionary who get to see things. The last pastor that I approached, responded by sending me his bank details.

    • Pieter,

      The faithful practice of MT 18:15-20 has proved challenging for the church in recent decades. I believe that is mainly because many fail to see the connection between MT 18 and MT 16. Accountability is the Lord’s plan for building His church. We have two chapters in our book, Redeeming Church Conflicts, on the topic. Also, Jonathan Leeman’s book “The Church and The Surprising Offense of God’s Love” is excellent on the topic.

      Best wishes for continued fruitful ministry.


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