Posted: January 4, 2008 in Church Leadership

When it comes to evaluating most things in life you know they are a luxury.  Starbucks, Leather Captain’s Chairs, a $25 pen, Box Seats, and 50″ HD TV’s are all obvious luxuries.  When it comes to some areas of our lives we don’t really recognize what things are truly above par.

At Oak Leaf Church we are a sort of dilemma with our office and our staff.  We have 11 staff (we are staffed for growth) and we only have 5 offices.  We don’t want to have our offices end up turning into assembly lines with 6 staff trying to make good use of limited square feet, but we are running out of options.  When you are used to having an office you assume it’s normal to have your own space, a place to hang your pictures, and where you can pick your nose in private.  However, the reality is that if everyone had their own office we would spend $4000 a months just on offices.

In today’s world, church, and professional environments what people really need is a desk, a decent chair, a great laptop, a printer and access to the Internet.  We provide all of those things for our employees, but we are constantly trying to upgrade their environments so they can feel more important and feel more confident as to their worth to the church.

Maybe it’s wrong, maybe it’s ignorance, but we really believe that ministry can be done well with limited resources, perks, and training.  We aren’t sending our staff to seminary, because being able to parse a past tense Greek verb doesn’t help you make disciples.  Nobody has gone on strike yet…maybe it will happen next week.


  1. Tanya says:

    my only comment is that it does get a bit loud from time to time – i know most of us are women and so that’s just a given, but sometimes it is a bit hard to focus.

  2. How do you feel about seminary training for pastors (not just staff members)? Do you think it should be required? Do you think it’s nice, but unnecessary? Do you think it hurts more than it helps?

  3. agratto says:

    It’s not ideal for anyone to have to share and lose their privacy. I think it’s similar to having to share a room with your sister/brother, it stinks but its necessary. The only other option for your parents in that situation is selling your house and paying $50,000 for another one.

    In a perfect world all staff would have their own space, but at OLC we aren’t at the point where we can provide any luxuries. Maybe soon though…

  4. agratto says:

    Pastors receiving seminary training can be a good thing for two reasons. Anyone who is going to regularly unpack and teach the Bible needs to know as much as they can about it. That includes knowing errors other people made, errors they would be prone to making, and what is really behind all of that text (Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic). The other reason they should go to seminary is to develop relationships with other Pastors, Church Staffers, and Professors. Learning how to interact with other people in your faith is important and it’s immediately overlooked after someone gets into a church. It just helps to be forced to interact with people who think a little different then you do.

  5. Tanya says:

    while i know that having a building doesn’t make a church, if given the choice between having fewer people share an office and having our own space on Sunday mornings – i’d choose the space on Sunday mornings. At this point, i’m just glad that we are not all sitting out in one big room where you have to go outside to have a phone conversation 🙂

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