The preoccupation with numbers which has seized the media in the aftermath of Nick Clegg’s interview …. leads me to mention some other numbers which I stumbled across while cruising through Steven Croft’s ‘Ministry in Three Dimensions.’
Evangelical Alliance surveyed 3000 [evangelical] clergy in 1990 and got the following results.
7 out of 10 feel overworked
3 in 10 feel their families suffer because of their work
Only 2 in 10 have received training in management or leading teams
Out of a typical 60 hour week, an average of 22 hours is spent in administration
38 minutes per week are spent in personal prayer.
The last one is obviously the most shocking – the first thing to get squeezed by everything else. And the cost of that is paid in all sorts of ways – for example I suspect that people are less likely to acquire the breadth or depth to move beyond ‘party’ or stereotypical responses to things.
Other ones? I am not sure what ‘administration’ is in these terms. I certainly spend more than a third of my working life sitting at a desk – and would defend it on the basis that good administration and communication is one of the foundations of ministry which is for sharing. Overworked? I certainly work too many hours – but ‘feeling overworked’ is occasional rather than common. Too many hours means life out of balance and not enough time for family and being.
Training? ’nuff said. Time for bed.