A Day in the Life of a Bi-Vocational Pastor.


7am.   Wake up to the sound of Andrew yelling, “Ezra’s on the stairs!”  Move in great haste to save the teetering 11-month old at the top of the stairs.  Let the day begin!

7:10. Breakfast. Feeding the baby and trying to figure out to cut the crust off an English Muffin while Julie pulls out their clothes and lunches for the day.

7:40. Load kids into the car and begin my morning job as bus driver. Andrew is crying because he can’t find mittens. Amelia reminds him he has mittens tied into his coat. Which he is wearing. Buckle them in and run back to the house to get Amelia’s snack – an orange. Give to Amelia. Andrew starts crying that he wants an orange.  Turn up the radio.

7:55. Unbuckle and walk both kids into Amelia’s school. 17 seconds later, return and buckle Andrew back into his seat.

8:10. Enough time between schools to run an errand. Today it’s going to the bank.

8:20. Arrive at Andrew’s school. Still a little early. Check email. Delete anything important.

8:25. Pretend to be an elevator to get Andrew out of the car. We race to the door. He wins. Again.

8:30. He’s changed into school shoes and I lift him up – as I do every school day – so he can peer into the classroom before we enter. “What do you see?” I ask. He replies, without fail, “Teachers and friends!” We enter and exchange “smooshie” hugs until he’s ready to rock.

8:45. Back in the car. Notice a missed call from work. Call back and spend a few minutes answering questions for a co-worker. Take a deep breath and listen to NPR for a few minutes before launching into the rest of the day.

9:00. Arrive home. Load up laptop and other accessories into the car. I’ll be working from the church today, and decide to bring over my wide-screen monitor to try out the docking station. Refill coffee. Shovel out mailbox. Bring in mail. Julie asks me to return dishes to the church leftover from pot luck yesterday. Clean off my car from the previous days’ snow flurry using a dish.

9:40. Finally make it to the office, which is 200ft away from the house. Unload the car and spend a few minutes organizing, hooking up the monitor, pushing buttons on the docking stations until it lights up.

9:55. Take another call for work. Save the world. Again.

10:00. Work! Write up and send out a weekly Monday-morning status report for a client. Exchange a quick half-dozen emails with a co-worker concerning an open work item. While exchanging emails an additional request comes in which takes precedence. Drop everything and shift gears.

11:00. Julie drops by to say hi (and pick up the credit card) before going grocery shopping. I take advantage of the break to go get a coffee at Freshies.

11:15. Work, take 2. Database backups, restores, and updating data from an excel spreadsheet.

12:00. Take a break to call Time Warner and cancel my home phone service. We haven’t even plugged it in since we arrived in Ellsworth 8 months ago. That $35 a month will help to cover my new taxes.

12:40. Pull out year-end donation reports which require my signature before being delivered. Review and sign each one. Humbled and grateful for the generosity and sacrifice of many. I sign my own, not really sure why.

1:00. Phone call from a lay leader at church. Discuss the previous day’s service and direction of the coming week – TBD.

1:15. Head home for lunch and my daily ritual of facilitating Andrew’s afternoon nap. Julie heats up leftovers for me while I read to Andrew. I relax and watch Millionare with Julie while eating lunch. I share the joy of being on the phone with Time Warner for an hour to cancel the phone service. She suggests cancelling cable as well. I suggest she call them.

2:00. Shovel more snow out back and bring in a couple loads of firewood.

2:20. Alerted that we may have accidentally taken home a pair of boots from one of Amelia’s friends who have the same style – and size – as Amelia. Unsuccessfully scour the shoe bin for anomalous boots.

2:30. Drive out to pick up Amelia while Julie stays home with napping kids. Greet other parents and discuss missing boot  situation. Boots are discovered at school. Day is saved. Amelia and I get back in the car and drive home.

3:00. Work, take 3. Take a couple calls, answer a couple emails, run some more database jobs.

4:00. Head home to bring in one more load of firewood while there is daylight.

4:05. Call former Youth Pastor who started his new job today.

4:10. Pick up cake from the store which I had ordered – and then forgot – for the Youth Pastor’s going away party.

4:25. Back in the office to wrap up a few things and close down shop for the day. Bring out bags of trash to the dumpster and discover bits of yesterday’s pot luck surrounding the dumpster, thanks to some animal which had got in. Clean up.

5:00. Walk through the door just as Andrew is waking up from his nap.

5:15. Thirty minute phone call with the church treasurer. End-of-year taxes, bills, home heating strategy, sicknesses, and fake Christmas trees.

6:00. Dinner! Amelia drops hers on the way to the table and bursts into tears.

6:15. Amelia stops crying.

7:00. Begin bedtime routine, slightly later then usual. Pajamas, teethbrushing, read books. Amelia is reading a version of “David and Goliath” to Ezra while I read “Just go to bed!” (appropriately) to Andrew.

9:00. House is quiet. Write a blog post.

10:45. Finish blog post and prep for board meeting tomorrow.

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