Pastor Bonuses and 11 Other Salary Trends

Leadership Network Press Release,

Leadership Network, in conjunction with Vanderbloemen Search Group, has just released the 2016 edition of its widely popular large-church salary report. Titled “12 Salary Trends Every Church Leader Should Know: 2016 Large Church Salary Study” authored by Warren Bird, Ph.D., the report offers the most comprehensive, cross-denominational financial perspective ever amassed about large churches in North America. Available at

The goal of the report is to help church leaders, especially those of innovative larger churches, who want to know “how do we compare against other churches similar to us?” This report focuses on the salaries of top-tier leadership of large churches, and includes information on budget, attendance, employee benefits, and other financial trends, including an international section on large churches in Canada.

How was the report compiled?

Responses came from 1,251 churches with weekly worship attendances ranging from over 30,000 down to 500 people.

“No one else has access to this many large churches, nor do they offer such in-depth insight on the overall findings and trends,” says Dave Travis, CEO of Leadership Network.

What are the headlines?

– Church size is the strongest predictor of pastor salaries, far more than geography, ethnicity, or other variables.

– 3.1% was the most recent pay raise given to executive staff.

– 49% of total church budget goes to staffing costs.

– 52% of churches spend 10% or more of their current church budget on ministry beyond their own congregation.

The report also contains an insightful Q&A section with Vanderbloemen Search Group, a premier executive search firm that conducts customized compensation analyses for churches and ministries around the world. “We partnered with Leadership Network because of their reputation as the leading organization to work cross-denominationally with North America’s largest and fastest growing churches,” says William Vanderbloemen, Founder and CEO, Vanderbloemen Search Group.

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