The Gut Wrenching Truth About Female Youth Pastor Compensation

I’ve been digging though the beginning of the data we’ve collected for The 2019 Youth Pastor Compensation Survey. In general there haven’t been any huge seismic shifts compared to last year. But in investigating this year’s top salaries (so far…), I stumbled across a disheartening fact.

Of the 150 highest earning Youth Pastors to have responded so far to the survey (out of more than 1200), only 16 of them are women.

That’s 12%. And only 2 of them cracked the top 50. I wrote an article recently for the National Network of Youth Ministries where I used a provocative paragraph title…and the point feels sharp: if your church wants to save money, hire a woman.

And it’s pathetic.

As a person who has studied Youth Pastor compensation for several years now, I want you to know that there are some glimmers of hope for this shifting. But at the same time the responsibility falls on Senior / Executive Pastors who are doing the hiring to make sure that when our churches are interviewing for a position, that we prepare a field of candidates to be considered that is diverse. Because our neighborhoods are diverse. Our families are diverse. Our congregations are diverse. And, folks, heaven will be diverse. If our pastoral staffs are full of middle aged white guys, imagine the value a female and/or minority perspective could bring to that group? It would be invaluable.

If you’re a female Youth Pastor and you’re reading this, please know that what you earn is not a reflection of your valuable contributions to the kingdom. You are vital and us men need you. So keep crushin it; and don’t be afraid to advocate for yourself as budgets cycle through. Don’t let anyone steal your power; and the most power you have is in your voice.

Leave a Reply