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Most Pastors Take 10-18 Hours to Prepare a Sermon, Researcher Says

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A Twitter poll by LifeWay president Thom Rainer showed pastors spend a range of hours working on their messages.

A Twitter poll by LifeWay president Thom Rainer showed pastors spend a range of hours working on their messages, and most take 10–18 hours to prepare one. Rainer admits the results of the poll are somewhat unscientific but are interesting and revealed some key points:

  • When asked how much time they spend in sermon preparation, most pastors responded with a range of time rather than a distinct number of hours spent.
  • 70 percent of pastors said it takes them between 10–18 hours to prepare a sermon. 
  • 15 percent said they spend 7–9 hours in sermon prep, and 10 percent said 6 hours or less, but these often indicated they work bivocationally. Another 6 percent take longer than 19 hours.
  • Many of the respondents expressed frustration that they don’t have enough time for sermon preparation.

The summary of the poll can be found at Baptist Press.

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