And yet, here I am — a future minister's lady friend. As it turns out, it's actually pretty great dating a future minister.
Seminarians are super intelligent and love having the kinds of deep, philosophical conversations that former liberal arts students like myself also happen to enjoy.
When, almost two years ago, I reported the pastor at my church to Episcopal authorities for sexual misconduct after a turbulent “relationship” which led to me attempting suicide, a lot of my friends and family didn’t understand what she had done wrong. Many people (including me, until last year) have never considered the question of whether it’s OK for a pastor to date a parishioner in his or her church.
They sometimes think it’s a relationship between two consenting adults.
So I’m writing this document to explain to my friends and family -- and the general public— these rules are in place, and why, increasingly, observers of religion and sexual abuse awareness organizations say that pastor-parishioner relationships should be forbidden.
One more quick point: I’m not the kind of person who frequently tells people how they should behave in their sex lives.
One pastor’s wife told us that her role was like getting a job for which she never applied.
Now practically speaking, this means singles are seeking out people to speak into their lives.
Unlike, perhaps, some of the readers of this article, I actively support full LGBTQ equality, and I do not believe that the only province of sexuality should be the marital relationship. But you, and I, and everyone, universally agree that some classes of sexual behavior are simply acceptable, like child molestation, or sexual assault.
And pastors dating their parishioners—although seemingly more benign at first—actually fits into that category. When you belong to a church, the ministers consult each other about what’s going on in your life—and this can create conflicts of interest if you’re dating one of them In my case, when I grew increasingly frazzled by my relationship with my pastor, I couldn’t go to one of the other ministers and talk about it. This would be like dating your manager, and then going to the CEO of the company for relationship advice.
podcast and answered ten questions on singleness and dating.
We get a lot of questions from young Christian men and women who are “not yet married.” Their season of life awakens many desires and hopes, uncertainties and insecurities, and tricky pastoral questions.