Helping Pastors with Sexual Purity

Posted to our blog on April 28th, 2011 by Dave Linde
In the On Our Hearts category / Tagged with with 0 comments

Sexual compromise + fear + silence = growing trouble.  This is true for any Christian.  It is true for pastors.  Maybe you and I are stumbling on the internet (for example), viewing sexually explicit material.  We tell no one about it because we are afraid of the consequences to our families or to our ministries.  So we continue in the bondage of guilt and shame and loss of power.  And we feed a growing reservoir of trouble that will eventually burst a dam.

Yet this enslaving cycle—sin, guilt, confession, resolve, sin, guilt, confession, resolve—within the self-perpetuating shroud of silence may be a reality for as many as half of the men in our congregations and as many as a third of the pastors.  (This according to various studies.)

The light of truth breaks the grip of secret sin.  But where can a pastor turn for help in a struggle with sexual sin? 

The NCD is offering a resource: Project Purity.  Many of you NCD pastors and church leaders know about Project Purity because you’ve heard about it at a recent district conference or it was presented to you in a pastor cluster.  This web announcement is designed to get the word out to as many more pastors as possible.

Project Purity is a creation of pastors (peers and colleagues, not bureaucrats or watchdogs) for pastors.  Designed by the NCD Council on Ministerial Standing, in collaboration with the NCD staff, EFCA Pastoral Care Ministries (John Herman), and the National Coalition for Purity (Irv Woolf), Project Purity is a strategy and pathway for maintaining or regaining sexual purity.  It is a resource available to all NCD pastoral staff members, both male and female, on a voluntary basis.

Project Purity is a pathway that provides safety for pastors to assist them in honestly addressing sexual issues.  It does this through substantial confidentiality.  It also provides safety for churches whose pastors may need to address these issues.  It does this through substantial accountability.  It is our hope that, in this way, pastors who are struggling with sexual compromise will find freedom and a new song and new power in ministry, and churches will benefit markedly from this pastoral renewal.

Project Purity’s overall resources range from a comprehensive church-computer policy, to recommended reading, to the services of professional counselors who are trained in issues of sexual integrity. 

There is one requirement built into Project Purity.  Applicants for an EFCA ministerial credential must affirm that they have read through the Project Purity material and that they purpose to live by the Biblical standard of sexual purity that is implied in the credential.  Apart from this requirement, participation in Project Purity is voluntary.

This resource can be helpful in a preventative as well as remedial way.  Whether you are living in purity at the present time or stumbling with some compromise or worried that you have crossed a line of no return, check out the Project Purity packet here on our website and make use of it. 

The pastors who created Project Purity offer it to you in a spirit of grace and hope.  May you deeply experience the grace and hope of Jesus and the gospel through it.

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