Clergy represent a unique employee group as they blend vocation and a sacred call with professional goals. The recruitment and retention of clergy has an impact on the pastor, the local church, as well as on the church community. Pastoral ministry in the twenty-first century is increasingly demanding and complex contributing to clergy retention issues. The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship of burnout, organizational commitment and value congruence with the intention to leave the church among American Baptist ordained clergy. A total of 218 American Baptist ordained clergy (ordained or recognized for ordination since 1995) completed a self-administered survey instrument. The vast majority of American Baptist clergy respondents were found to be committed and dedicated, not burned out and intending to stay with the local church. Hypotheses testing indicated an association between high Emotional Exhaustion and high Continuance Commitment and low Affective Commitment; high Depersonalization with low Normative Commitment and low Affective Commitment; and high Personal Accomplishment with high Affective Commitment and high Normative Commitment. High EE and high DP were each associated with the intention to leave; and high NC and high AC were both associated with the intention to stay. Low Continuance Commitment and low Normative Commitment were both associated with poor value congruence and poorer value congruence was found to be associated with the intention to leave. Poorer value congruence was found to be associated with the intention to leave. Strategies to increase their sense of personal accomplishment and engagement, value congruence and both affective and normative commitment were presented and would be of value to clergy and the church.
|Subjects||Clergy; Management; Occupational psychology|
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