Paid to Preach

Just Be God’s: A Call to Continuing Conversion is a series of blog posts. You might want to start reading it from the beginning: Here.

October 5

$200 for preaching?! Yep. That happened. I received a check in the mail from someone I don’t know, but it’s from the “Brookline church of Christ” checkbook.

I had no idea this was a paid gig. Several people asked me if I was getting paid, and I was like, “No. You don’t get paid to preach. You’re just like serving, and the church is poor.” Apparently not. Now, I know why people do this, and I know why one of the regular preacher’s wives was looking at me all sideways asking, “So, you’re preaching on Sunday…”

I received a very nice letter, along with my check:

Hi Paige,

I meant to give this to you at church Sunday, but I didn’t catch you before you left… so here it is. Thanks for preaching, I really enjoyed your sermon.

Dave

It’s probably a good thing I didn’t know, because I don’t know if I would have preached if I knew I got paid, and I don’t know if I would have said I’d do it again if I knew I got paid.

I mean, I know everyone who invited me to preach knows that money is involved, and no one mentioned it?! Why does money make it more intimidating? Maybe I should have done their usual post-holily conversation—at least that way they get their money’s worth.

I don’t know why it feels so weird. But I guess it makes sense. It’s probably more economical to simply pay someone to preach, than to have a full time preacher.

When I decided I would be okay preaching, I guess it was sort of an intrinsic decision (besides that whole power trip thing). Obviously, there is also extrinsic motivation (besides money) like breaking church of Christ rules, getting attention and hopefully praise for whatever I preach, being one of those girls that preach, being able to use my degree… There was still a lot of risk involved, it was very personal. I want to serve, and apparently they need some women to say “Yes” to preaching (and I don’t know why they don’t). Though Brookline does expect a certain caliber, they want people trained in theology, and many are not theologically trained in the churches of Christ. I’m glad I could help, and I said I would help again.

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