A Look at the Authority of the Parish Pastor

Martin Koeller, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis


Changes in society, misuse and abuse of authority in the pastoral office and changes in congregations concerning the role of the pastor, have all led to a need for defining and identifying what authority in the church is, and what authority the pastor has.

The scope of this project was to look at the Scriptural and Confessional foundations of Pastoral Authority along with discussions with the Board of Elders, Constitution Committee and Bible Study groups, to draw a basis for: 1) a definition of “Pastoral Authority"; and 2) the right use of that authority in the office of the parish pastor.