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Ten Types of Pastors You (Will) Meet

We sometimes see pastors as different specimens, but in reality they're quite human. In fact, if you meet enough of them, you'll start to notice a pattern in the way some of them come off.

Below are the different types of pastors that I've come across in my context - and I'm sure you will come across them too. Admittedly, these are caricatures because most of the descriptions are meant to be tongue-in-cheek i.e. I just wanted to have a little fun. So here they are: ten pastors that you're bound to encounter in your life.

Note: I've excluded from this list the "faithful pastor" (90% of pastors) & the "false teacher" (1% of pastors).

1. The Doctrinal Pastor

This pastor loves theology. He reads books with titles that you can't even pronounce. He'll smirk if you ever quote Francis Chan or Matt Chandler. You sometimes try to talk to him, but he seems only experienced in engaging dead theologians. Therefore talking to him makes you feel strange, so you don't talk to him anymore. But that's ok - he doesn't really want to talk to you either. 

2. The Emotional Pastor

This guy is passionate. So he yells. A lot. He's not angry though - he's just convicted. You sometimes don't know what he's yelling about, but he's always yelling about something. Sometimes it's about deep stuff, so you feel rebuked. Other times it's about happy topics, so you're confused why he's still yelling. But since you're always guaranteed a show, you'll be there Sunday. 

3. The "I'm a Sinner Too" Pastor

He has a heart for the "lost sheep." He wants them to know that even though they've messed up, Jesus wants them. To emphasize this, he highlights his own sins as a way of saying, "See? If God can love someone like me, He can love you too." You've probably heard his testimony several times & went up for his altar calls once or twice.

4. The Socially Awkward Pastor

This guy confuses you. He seems so friendly & sociable on Sundays when he preaches. But when you meet with him alone over coffee, it ends up being so...awkward. He only talks at length when you ask him a question. Other than that, there are a lot of awkward silences. You conclude you like him better behind the pulpit.

5. The Creepy Pastor

This guy says borderline inappropriate stuff - but not inappropriate enough where you need to report him. Still, he'll sometimes stare at you way too long before he answers your question or he'll hug you in a way that makes you feel funny. You probably have to repeat to yourself, "Dude, he's a pastor..." after each encounter with him.

6. The Old School Pastor

This guy is your classic conservative, suit-wearing pastor. He's not necessarily old - but he just acts old-school. He only reads Puritans. He insists you call him "pastor." He refuses to drink alcohol not because it's a sin but it can lead to sin - so why mess with it? When he joins a conversation with your friends, the mood changes & you always end up talking about spiritual things.

7. The Hipster Pastor

He's part of a new breed of pastors. He wears skinny jeans. He sports a beard. He drinks drip coffee. He's into craft beers. He tweets. He instagrams. If you look closely, he has a tattoo hidden underneath his khaki shirt. Yet he's a five-point Calvinist & reads John Owens. People always tell him, "You're so different from other pastors I know..."

8. The Outreach Pastor

This guy is all about social causes. He wants your church to reach the city. He always posts on Facebook about hurricanes, earthquakes, and poverty around the globe. He once brought a homeless person into Sunday service & later used that moment as an illustration to show how unfriendly his church is. In 2012, he went to find Kony.

9. The Homegrown "I Love My Church" Pastor

This guy didn't want to be the leader of his church. But after the 5th new EM pastor came & went, he wasn't about to let his church get abandoned again. So he decided to step up & become the pseudo-pastor. He now preaches & teaches, but he's also in-over his head. You really appreciate how he cares - which makes it harder to tell him that you're leaving his church too.

10. The FOB Pastor

He clearly fits better with a 1st generation congregation, but he's been assigned to your EM or College Ministry. You don't really understand his sermons, but you appreciate his attempts to overcome the language barrier. His wife is really quiet & submissive-looking, but seems lonely. You want to talk to her, but she doesn't say much, which makes you wonder if she speaks any English.

Again these just my general, tongue-in-cheek observations. Did I miss any?