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Pastorpreneur is a term that refers to an innovative pastor or Christian leader willing to take risks, similar to business risks, in an attempt to grow their church and community to further the Christian mission. The term, which combines the words pastor and entrepreneur, was coined by Dr. John Jackson, President of Vision Quest Ministries. Dr. Jackson pastors a church, but also speaks to church leaders with the intent of helping them create and grow high impact churches.
Though the term pastorpreneur was invented by Dr. Jackson, who has developed a website and written books on the pastorpreneur concept, which primarily involves developing modern leadership skills within ministry, the phrase is often used in the media to describe the leaders of large churches, termed “mega-churches.” A pastorpreneur is seen as a leader of a modern church organization, who is willing and able to implement techniques within his church and community that may be considered different by more orthodox or traditional leaders, all with the intent of growing their church and community through their ministry efforts.
Modern churches focus on meeting modern needs by developing opportunities to minister to various member and community participants. The risks associated with growing a church to serve its community range from building larger church buildings, complete with gymnasiums, cafes, playgrounds, and baseball diamonds to investing in community partnerships. A pastorpreneur is viewed as a leader who can step into the leadership role within a church and grow the church and its budget through increased membership.
In essence, the pastorpreneur is part CEO and part pastor and they are considered Christian businessmen. It is a concept that combines business practices with religion in an effort to meet the needs of modern churchgoers. The term is primarily reserved for the leaders of American churches and is often criticized by the more traditional religious sects. However, the so-called mega-churches have seen rapid growth, and thus a positive light has been cast on the concept of a pastorpreneur.