"Ready to move a lot?"
That's the question an old professor of mine asked when she heard I was dating a man preparing for ministry in the United Methodist Church.
I didn't take her reference to the UMC's itinerant, circuit-riding pastor tradition seriously at the time. Three years into our marriage and first full-time appointment, I now understand that this is a major concern for many clergy families in the UMC. Some pastors retire with tenures at ten or more churches under their belt, and despite the common knowledge that long pastoral tenures are key to long-term growth and vitality in a congregation, there's still a whole lot of moving going on each year (in many cases, because the pastor has requested it).
I would ask how many churches your spouse has served or how many times you have moved, but that number really doesn't say much unless you know how long he or she has been in ministry. (Three churches in five years means something very different from three churches in a lifetime!) So, I'll phrase the question in a different way:
What is the average length of your tenure at each church you or your spouse have served?
Share your answer in the poll in the sidebar at right. (If you are reading this in a reader, you'll need to click over to the SpouseConnect site.) If you want to elaborate on your answer or this question in general, leave a comment!