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Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - Printable Version

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Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - pastor's wife - 02-01-2014

A comment on a friend's facebook page today made me notice this: her pastor is identified on facebook as "Pastor Joe Smith" (not real name). So anytime he is tagged or he comments, he is identified as "Pastor".

What do you all think of this? Coming out from the highly authoritative structure of the IFB, it kind of rubs me the wrong way (even though I want to be the type of person that just "lives and lets live" in issues like this).

It just seems overly pompous to me, like someone extra-eager to reinforce his position of superiority. Most of us don't identify ourselves on fb as "Professor Vera Smart" or "Doctor Ima Surgeon" or "Mr. So-n-So." So why would he have to be Pastor Joe Smith? Can't he just be Joe Smith and identify himself as Pastor of First Baptist Church in the profile info?

I don't really care about this. But I felt a twinge of annoyance when I saw it this morning, so I thought I'd ask what you all thought.

(I've seen it with some Pentecostal groups too.)


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - Rob S - 02-01-2014

The one that gets me is when the Pastor's Wife (not you) puts a post on Face Book but rather than referencing her husband by his first name, instead calls him "Pastor." As if she doesn't want the rest of the church to think that she calls him by his first name. For example: "I am going to go shopping today. Pastor will be taking me to lunch."


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - Tiarali - 02-01-2014

My old pastor's wife did call him pastor. So did his adult son. It's just one of many issues that make me think he has some sort of personality disorder - his lack of intimate personal relationships.


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - WalrusWrangler - 02-01-2014

At my home church, everyone called the pastor "Bro. Tom" or "the preacher." At my current (soon to be ex-) church, everyone calls the pastor "Preacher." It's super awkward in conversation. "I enjoyed Preacher's message Sunday." "I told Preacher about the banquet planning." "Preacher invited me to his house for dinner Saturday." Even when I was happy with the church I refused to call him "Preacher" on the grounds that it was weird. I still just say "the preacher" because I have a feeling saying "Bro. Bernard" would be seen as disrespectful, however silly it is. (the above names are fake)

I'm going to change my name to be "Programmer Bob Belcher" (except with my real name) on Facebook. I'm sure nobody with think it odd at all.


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - bean - 02-01-2014

Teacher/Coach Bean checking in here. LOL.
I know our last church, the pastor was nothing but "Pastor" Even at the LC (lutheran Church) most refer to him as pastor, even his wife. Wonder if it is more a throwback to an older, more conservative era. Not sure. It's still the case around here


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - redhot - 02-01-2014

(02-01-2014, 02:09 PM)Rob S Wrote: The one that gets me is when the Pastor's Wife (not you) puts a post on Face Book but rather than referencing her husband by his first name, instead calls him "Pastor." As if she doesn't want the rest of the church to think that she calls him by his first name. For example: "I am going to go shopping today. Pastor will be taking me to lunch."

My dad won't "allow" my mom to have FB (that's a post for another time) but she always refers to him as "pastor" whenever she talks about him to others. Sometimes she forgets who she's talking to, and calls him that when she's talking to us kids.


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - Mommy2Kids - 02-02-2014

I love that our pastor and our previous pastor both refer to themselves by their first names. Refreshing.


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - Don - 02-02-2014

You all already know how I feel about this but I'll put in my 2¢.
The desire to let everyone know you are a "Pastor" comes from a need to be recognized as an authority. It is a power issue. This person and those like him have a need to let people know that they are figures of authority over others. These are those who require others know their place. Pastor establishes that he is of the clergy class/caste and he is due all rights and privileges there unto pertaining.

"Pastor" is supposed to lend an air of respectability, of leadership, of Holiness to those who hold the title. And as Lord Acton points out, it is rank heresy to assert that the office sanctifies the holder of it. Yet, that is the reason for the requirement that everyone know he is a "Pastor."

Now I would tell all those who believe that the title Pastor endues them with Super Sanctimony that in this age of Hyles, Schaap, Gray, Swaggert, Baker and a host of others... the title "pastor" no longer holds the awe and power it held in days gone by. In fact, it is a negative title for many of us these days. It conjures up images of fraud, corruption, abuse, lying, and coverup.

And the more vitriolically they defend their title the greater the likelihood that they are guilty of one or more of those accusations.


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - captain_solo - 02-03-2014

(02-02-2014, 11:58 PM)Don Wrote: You all already know how I feel about this but I'll put in my 2¢.
The desire to let everyone know you are a "Pastor" comes from a need to be recognized as an authority. It is a power issue. This person and those like him have a need to let people know that they are figures of authority over others. These are those who require others know their place. Pastor establishes that he is of the clergy class/caste and he is due all rights and privileges there unto pertaining.

"Pastor" is supposed to lend an air of respectability, of leadership, of Holiness to those who hold the title. And as Lord Acton points out, it is rank heresy to assert that the office sanctifies the holder of it. Yet, that is the reason for the requirement that everyone know he is a "Pastor."

Now I would tell all those who believe that the title Pastor endues them with Super Sanctimony that in this age of Hyles, Schaap, Gray, Swaggert, Baker and a host of others... the title "pastor" no longer holds the awe and power it held in days gone by. In fact, it is a negative title for many of us these days. It conjures up images of fraud, corruption, abuse, lying, and coverup.

And the more vitriolically they defend their title the greater the likelihood that they are guilty of one or more of those accusations.

I always respected several pastors I have had that encouraged people to use their first name. In one case a guy with an earned Doctorate (PhD) who rarely allowed the use of Dr. in his title (and only outside his church, conferences, teaching syllabus, etc) but would encourage people to call him pastor because that was his calling. Another pastor would ask people not to call him "reverend" because he felt that only God should be revered, and would say they could call him pastor if they felt they needed to use a title. He would have preferred Bishop or Elder, but felt they would be confusing because of common modern use in ways that didn't accurately convey what his role was.

The abuse of the position doesn't make it any less necessary for someone to actually be a shepherd/pastor. I think the problem is that the guys who don't actually act as a proper pastor as a shepherd are much more likely to demand the use of the title and make it about the position and the prestige instead of about the role and its incumbent responsibilities. Better to do the actual work of a pastor and have people respect and follow you because of that than only because you demand that they use your title and bow to your authority by force of your personality.


RE: Calling Oneself "Pastor So-and-so" on Facebook - co_heir - 02-03-2014

I know some preachers on the radio who introduce themselves as "Pastor so-and-so," as if Pastor is their first name. Most "pastors" are really just preachers. They don't do very much pastoring. I believe pastor is more of a role or function than a title. A person can be a pastor without having the title.