7 Surprising Stats from the 2013 Children’s Ministry Salary Survey


Dollar3In the newest
issue of Children’s Ministry Magazine
, we’ve got the results of
our 2013 Salary Survey. No one else does a survey like this, so the
results are exclusive. We’ve asked paid children’s ministry
professionals to tell us how they are compensated for what they

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The results are up on our
website. After reading through the data, I thought I would point
out some of the more unexpected findings and talk about them here.
Here are seven surprising stats from the 2013 salary survey.


1.Going Up.According to our exclusive survey
results, overall visibility, compensation, and benefits are on the
upswing for professional children’s ministers everywhere. More
people are falling in the median full-time salary range, $40,000 to
$44,999, with 22 percent in this pay range. Across the board, more
children’s ministry professionals are seeing an increase in
benefits, including 40 percent receiving pension and retirement

2. Equip Yourself.Half of you are given a book
and magazine allowance, and 44 percent are given an allowance to
buy supplies. If you are part of the 56 percent not given a supply
allowance, here are some craft supplies you can
make from scratch

sunday school

Kids LOVE these Sunday School resources!
Check 'em out and see why so many children's ministries around the world are having success with Group's products!

3. Rest and Relax.In 2013, the average paid
children’s ministry staffer has four personal days to use and 12
paid vacation days. We’ve talked about
how important it is to take some time off
every now and again.
Use that time off!

4.Here and There.According to the survey, 35
percent of you are bivocational, working two jobs to help
supplement your income. As someone who served in children’s
ministry as well as holding a full-time job, I know the challenges
that come with bivocational ministry. A huge thank you for all
those out there that give two (or more) jobs their all.

5.Gender Equality.In 2008, our survey showed
men in full-time children’s ministry made about $10,000 more than
women. Today, those figures have balanced out. Both men and women
make the median salary of $40,000 to $44,999.

6. Raise Rates.A little over half (51 percent)
of children’s ministers were given a raise this year. That’s great
news, because only 11 percent asked for one. If you are part of the
89 percent who didn’t ask for a raise, and you feel you deserve
one, check this
article out on how to get a raise without being pushy

7.Missed Opportunity?We asked survey
participants if they would ever turn down a children’s ministry
position because of salary. In 2008, only 14 percent said they
would. Today, 55 percent said yes. Are churches missing out on
talent because of their pay range? Are children’s ministers missing
out on God’s calling because of money? What do you think?


What conclusions do you take from the
findings? Again, you can find the full results here. Let us know your
thoughts in the comment section below.

We know money isn’t the reason you got into
this line of work. The work you do, leading kids to Jesus, is
priceless. I want to leave you with this story of ministry and
. I hope it touches your heart like it did mine.


About Author

David Jennings

David has served kids around the world for the majority of his life. From Texas to Romania, he has followed where God has led him. Most recently, he served for six years as a children's director in the great state of Alabama before moving to Colorado to work for Group as an associate editor.


  1. I get paid $450 bi weekly. i have no "vacation days" or "time off" other than most Saturdays. im expected to sit in my office at my desk for 4 hours/day/m-f. my schedule is pretty flexible. I have a pretty great boss and are given "free run" of the childrens ministry to use the gifts and talents God has given me. I really love and enjoy what I do. I see it as more than a "job" but I feel so under appreciated by our leadership and parents. it's hard work. managing volunteers is a pain (for the most part). not having the space we need. not having the items we need. having no budget to work with. it gets tiring and sometimes you feel like you're always spinning your wheels. other times its fantastic. it's ministry and it's tough. that's the bottom line. if I got paid more I would like to stay longer. but I don't feel like I am "doing my part" to help provide for our family and I don't see a raise anywhere in my future.
    needless to say.. i'm considering my options I suppose… with a heavy heart.

  2. Kayla,
    Thank you so much for all that you do. Please allow me to encourage you and others who find themselves feeling just like you. In 2004, I found myself in a very similar ministry opportunity as you and honestly I felt very alone. Here's what you do:
    1. Light the world on fire right where you are and others will notice.
    2. Make connections and friendships with larger churches that share your common values and uncompromising biblical principles.
    If you can kindle the relationship with the ones you really admire, they can really help you. If they are good, they have amazing connections and are always looking to add the up and coming stars to their teams. With the right heart, passion for ministry and someone who will invest in you, you too will quickly find yourself in a position to return the favor and invest in others.

  3. Helmut Egesa Wagabi on

    It is so encouraging to note that reasonably good money can be made through the children's ministry in some parts of the world. Where I live, one must have some other job for his/her subsistence. The children's ministry tends to be voluntary and so fewer people take it up.

  4. I know we need to support our families and being paid for it is important. But why do we do ministry is it for gain or is it for service and worship to my saviour. there is nothing greater than seeing a child grow in a life long relationship with Jesus and to be the person who helped lead them to start that journey. I have experienced this over the years and God has always provided. When we put God first amazing things happen. The support of leadership and recognition of the ministry of children is just or more important than others because of the foundation of spiritual life. If not done right will lead to a rejection of Christ and the church by the time the child is 12. I would like to celebrate all Children's Ministries people paid or not and my prayer is that your love for you saviour is the reason for doing your ministry.

  5. I appreciate seeing the results of this survey. Thanks for doing it.
    One additional piece of info would be to know how many hours the children's pastors are paid for as compares with their church's and children's ministry weekly attendance.

  6. I think the increase in the number of folkswho would decline a position based on salary indicates an increase in the professionalism in children's ministry. More people are supporting their families with the salary they get from being a minister to children.

  7. Sometimes I feel alone in my ministry. Our pastor is supportive but there is no budget for any position. I work 60 hours a week at a job and want to do more ministry but there is nothing in the church budget for a children's pastor. There is a budget for the Youth pastor but he has half the teens than the children ministry. Sometimes, I don't understand.

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