When to Contact Your Pastor
People typically contact their pastor for major life events (e.g., upcoming wedding, baptism, funeral), but there are many other good reasons to get in touch.
Contact your pastor when . . .
You or a loved one is going into the hospital. Whether it’s a “routine” operation or an emergency visit, your pastor can plan to visit you, a family member, or a friend with God’s Word of comfort. He can also keep you in his prayers.
You would like a prayer said for you or someone you know. Your pastor is always happy to pray for and with others, and our almighty and merciful God answers prayer! Please let the pastor know if you would like a prayer said publicly during the Divine Service; otherwise, he will keep it confidential. If the prayer is for someone else, please ask his or her permission first before requesting a public prayer.
Your conscience is troubling you. God doesn’t leave us alone to struggle with temptation and guilt. He invites us to confess our sin and receive His forgiveness. You can confess your sin to your pastor in confidence and freely receive God’s forgiveness and absolution delivered to you personally. You’re welcome to come to confession even if no particular sin is troubling you.
You’re wrestling with a spiritual issue or have a question about something the Bible says. Questions often come up when you’re talking about religion with coworkers and friends, reading or studying the Bible, or listening to a sermon. Your pastor loves to discuss God’s Word and wants to see you grow in your understanding of it.
You’re facing a challenging decision or are dealing with difficult life circumstances. What should a Christian do in such situations? Your pastor will be happy to listen and help you think through your issue, pointing to relevant insights from God’s Word. If your challenge is beyond his expertise, he can refer you to others who might be able to help.
You’re not able to come to church for a prolonged period of time. Your pastor can make a home visit for a devotion and prayer, and if you so desire, the Lord’s Supper. Your pastor wants you to stay connected to God’s Word and his Sacrament. We’re all in constant need of God’s forgiveness and mercy.
A young family member is going to college or relocating for other reasons and needs to find a church in the new location. Pastors are happy to do what they can to help young people stay connected.
You know someone who wants to know more about Jesus. Your pastor would love to meet with him or her to share the hope that we have in Christ. You might offer to introduce this person to your pastor. This can make the opportunity a little less intimidating for someone who isn’t used to talking with a pastor.
You have an issue in your marriage that you’re having difficulty resolving. If an issue in your marriage seems particularly troublesome, there could be an underlying spiritual issue. Often people wait until their marriage drastically deteriorates before seeking help. A Christian marriage needs to be rooted in God’s Word and built on His love. It’s good to be reminded of God’s love, especially as it applies to you, your spouse, and your relationship. (This advice really applies to any strained relationship.)
You have a question, concern, or suggestion about something at church. Many questions can be cleared up easily by simply asking. Likewise, if you have a concern about something at church or have a suggestion, let your pastor know. He might not be able to implement every suggestion, but your input matters.
If you are not currently being served by any pastor, feel free to contact one of our pastors. They would be happy to listen and talk with you.
*With thanks to Pr. Sam Gullixson for the original list.