by Anne Jackson
Growing up the daughter of a pastor, Anne Jackson experienced firsthand the conflict, stress, and struggle church leaders often face. She vowed her life in ministry would be different. Yet, years later, as a church leader, she was hospitalized because stress began wreaking havoc on her body. After being released from the hospital, an associate pastor asked her, 'Does working at this church interfere with your communion with Christ?' The question was paramount in turning her life around.
Thinking she wasn't alone, Anne developed a website that allowed church leaders to share their struggles. Within a few days, she was flooded with over a thousand responses from people pouring out their stories of burnout. Using anecdotal parallels between Mad Cow Disease and leadership trends in the church, she writes not only to help us realize what church leaders are facing, but also to provide practical and positive treatment plans.