In Summary - Clergy / Religious Ministers
The Work - Clergy / Religious Ministers
Ministers serve their religious community by teaching the faith, preparing and delivering sermons, leading acts of worship, and officiating at events such as weddings and funerals. They give spiritual guidance and comfort in times of distress and organise practical support, such as providing material comforts to those in need.
Ministers may arrange programmes for theological or biblical study groups, they may also organise community and social events for people of all ages in the congregation. They may also have financial and administrative duties. Many have a prominent role in the community that may involve them in a variety of projects.
They may contribute to newsletters, pamphlets, and articles for newspapers. They must also prepare and hold records as required by civil or church law.
They are required to set aside time for the preparation of sermons, addresses and prayers, and for their own spiritual and devotional life. Accommodation is usually provided for ministers. Depending on the denomination, candidates for ordination normally have to accept a ministry in a location chosen for them.
Most commonly reported Work Tasks
- Pray and promote spirituality.
- Read from sacred texts such as the Bible, Torah, or Koran.
- Prepare and deliver sermons or other talks.
- Organize and lead regular religious services.
- Share information about religious issues by writing articles, giving speeches, or teaching.
- Instruct people who seek conversion to a particular faith.
- Counsel individuals or groups concerning their spiritual, emotional, or personal needs.
- Visit people in homes, hospitals, or prisons to provide them with comfort and support.
- Train leaders of church, community, or youth groups.
- Administer religious rites or ordinances.
Most commonly reported Work Activities
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- Developing Objectives and Strategies Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.
- Assisting and Caring for Others Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
- Training and Teaching Others Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
- Developing and Building Teams Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.
- Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
- Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
- Performing for or Working Directly with the Public Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
- Thinking Creatively Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
- Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
Interests - Clergy / Religious Ministers
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
The Social person's interests focus on interacting with the people in their environment. In all cases, the Social person enjoys the personal contact with other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.
Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.
Enterprising people like situations that involve using resources for personal or corporate economic gain. Such people may have an opportunistic frame of mind, and are drawn to commerce, trade and making deals. Some pursue sales and marketing occupations. Many will eventually end up owning their own business, or in management roles in larger organisations. They tend to be very goal-oriented and work best when focused on a target. Some have an entrepreneurial inclination.
Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their most productive under supervisors who give clear guidelines and while performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.
They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
If you are thinking about becoming a minister you must already be active within your own religious community and possess a deep spiritual conviction. The reasons for seeking ordination include:
- wanting to share and lead religious teaching and worship
- a desire to bring comfort and help to others through religion
- a compelling sense of vocation to challenge people beyond their immediate beliefs and morals
As a minister, you must be able to relate to people of all kinds, in all circumstances, with compassion and sensitivity. Leadership skills, an ability to inspire others, and moral and emotional strengths are needed in this work, along with perseverance and stamina.
You need to be comfortable working within a hierarchy, for example taking instructions from your religious superiors.
Entry Requirements - Clergy / Religious Ministers
Pay & Salary - Clergy / Religious Ministers
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 30k - 55k
Catholic Priest Dublin Diocese: 31
Church of Ireland Rector: 30
Roman Catholic Hospital Chaplain: 44 - 55
The basic income of a curate in the Dublin Archdiocese is €24,079 a year, plus up to €2,820, depending on length of service. Parish priests get an additional allowance of €4,827, which would bring their maximum total to €31,726.
Priests also live rent-free and have items such as health insurance paid for them.
Dublin Diocese / HSE.ie
Last Updated: March, 2017
* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Labour Market Updates - Clergy / Religious Ministers
Useful Contacts - Clergy / Religious Ministers
Communications Office, Archdioceses of Dublin
Church of Ireland
St.Patrick's Pontifical University