Review: Help for the New Pastor

Help for the New Pastor: Practical Advice for Your First Year of Ministry by Charles Malcolm Wingard

I received this book at Together for the Gospel this year, and I think it was a great choice for the young pastors there. We learn so much about studying and delivering the Word at seminary, but I think most guys would say that there is a learning curve when it comes to church administration and pastoral care. Hopefully education on these subjects comes from watching trusted mentors, but I fear more often it’s a trial by fire for young pastors. Help for the New Pastor is a great reference tool for young pastors feeling overwhelmed by church leadership and pastoral care.

While I have learned a lot about the content of the first six chapters, the rest of the book was full of insights that I had not encountered often. In particular, chapters 9, 10, and 13 were full of wisdom and experience about what to talk about during visits and even what scriptures a pastor might want to read. I’m happy to have this on my shelf, and I will regularly give it as a gift to new pastors.

  1. Understanding your call to ministry
  2. Preparing for pulpit ministry
  3. Preparing and delivering a sermon
  4. Practical advice for preaching
  5. Leading worship
  6. The Sacraments
  7. Church Administration
  8. Growing through conflict
  9. Home visitation
  10. Practicing hospitality
  11. Counseling
  12. Weddings
  13. Hospital and Hospice Care
  14. Funerals
  15. Your denominational duties
  16. The character and habits of effective ministers
  17. Small things that yield big results
  18. A long and faithful ministry