Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Female Pastors earn more than Male Pastors

According to Christianity Today, in the section Church Law Today; According to a recent national survey of church workers, females in the position of full-time solo pastor earn more than their male counterparts. The survey these results were gathered from was conducted by Your Church, a ministry of Christianity Today International, and was based on total compensation, the sum of salary plus all benefits including: housing allowance/parsonage, retirement, life insurance, health insurance, and continuing education.

Although the overwhelming majority (93.7%) of solo-pastor respondents were male, female solo-pastors reported 10.4% higher total compensation. Average salary for women solo-pastors alone was 8.6% higher than men’s. Benefits for women solo-pastors were higher as well including: housing allowance/parsonage (20.4% higher) and retirement (24.8% higher). This led to the combined 10.4% higher total compensation for female solo-pastors.

The survey was conducted in early 2007 and the final tabulations include responses from over 5,750 people for 13 church positions. The total results and information can be found in the book; 2008 Compensation Handbook for Church Staff.

I knew it, I am rich, I am rolling in dough, not. I don't know who they interviewed, what denominations, the accuracy of the reporting, or any of that, I do know they didn't interview me.
Anybody else out their rich? And I am not saying that men are making a whole lot more than me either. I am just saying....

The United Methodist Church shows that women are making 9% less than men are. So which is it, I am making more or less? The fact is you will not get rich in ministry, you are not called into ministry to get rich, you are called to serve. But the report in Christianity today, leaves some questions? And the questions I have have to do with the stats of what areas clergywomen are serving in.
15% of district superintendents are women, so that means 85% are not making that salary which is a lot higher than mine.
8% of all bishops, active and retired, are women, so that 92% of women are not making that salary which is definitely bigger than mine.
2% of clergy serving as lead pastors of churches of 1,000 members or more are women, and I know I am making a whole lot less than that, and so are 98% of the women. So how are we making higher than men.

There are things you can do with your compensation package, that effects your taxes and makes it look like on paper you are making less when in fact you are making a good salary. And if you are part of a cafeteria plan, pretax dollars help and that makes it look like you are making less, when you are in fact making more. So that's why I raised the question about the reporting of the amount people made.

Thoughts? Any body else making more? Any body else seen some different stats?


Rev. Dulce said...

It sounds pretty bogus to me. Most of the information that I have ever read says that women in all walks of life earn much less than men. And I know that starting my D.Min. program is really becoming a financial nightmare. It brought me to tears today.

All I can say is that they obviously didn't take into account how many women pastors are also single parents and the sole breadwinner for the family.

revhipchick said...

i can't help but question what their purpose of that article was. it sounds like hooey to me!

did they by chance touch on the statistics you offered? or how about women pastors' burn out rate?

i still can't imagine that they are remotely close to accurate.

The Vicar of Hogsmeade said...

I think their polling data is skewed. There are plenty of clergywomen who would not be on a mailing list associated with Christianity Today. Therefore, the folks they ask would not be representative. Who and how you ask makes a big difference in the answer you get.

For once, I'm thinking the UM stats are more reliable. In our conference, the difference is closer to 12% based on the journal.

Songbird said...

I know that's not true in my Conference. Or in my bank account.

Diane said...

I'm dumbfounded.

Anonymous said...

The discrepancy, if accurate, may be attributed to different compensation along denominational lines. Mainline churches are the churches that include the majority of female pastors, while they are also the denominations that have the highest compensation guidelines. Pastors in evangelical churches generally earn considerably less than pastors of mainline churches. Consequently, while women may earn less than men within a given mainline denomination, when including all churches women pastors may on average out-earn men pastors.