Ten Ways to Kill a Pastor

A collection of short stories, Ten Ways to Kill a Pastor peeks behind the curtain and shines a light into what has become for so many in ministry, a very dark place. From abusive members to impossible schedules often resulting in failing health and family decay, Ten Ways presents church-goers with an opportunity for personal reflection as well as gives voice to the often undetectable “hurts” lurking behind the pastor’s smile.


“Sharing experiences is important. The sharing of experience isn’t to stop. And while seminary courses, field work, and vicarage assignments all serve important roles in forming pastors for dealing with people, Chris Thoma brings together and shares the often unteachable experiences in Ten Ways to Kill a Pastor. A Lutheran minister, Thoma faces off with ten troubling situations that often confront pastors and their families, and he does so through easy to read vignettes. Each is presented so vividly that the reader—whether pastor, spouse, or layperson—will ask silently, ‘How is it that he knows me so well?’ They are incredibly real and reflect life in the ministry from a very important perspective. Each chapter being a mirror of a pastor’s soul, I highly recommend this as a resource to be studied and discussed by pastors and laypeople alike. The Lutheran Confessions speak of the ‘mutual consolation of the brethren.’ Thoma has provided a place where the need for that consolation can be identified and the effort begun.”
Chairman of the Systematics Department
Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Indiana
Author of Discourses in Matthew and James: The Apostle of Faith

“This book provides a real and gritty depiction of the pastoral ministry. Pastor Thoma does a great service to the church by exposing the abuses that many pastors often endure while presenting the ever present comfort of Christ Jesus. There is tremendous comfort—even in the midst of tremendous pain—knowing that God is not at war with His people.”
Pastor of Saint Luke Lutheran Church
Haslett, Michigan
Author of Being Lutheran

“It is difficult for many church members to fully understand the demands of pastoral ministry. Chris Thoma helps by presenting ten high-stress scenarios caused by congregations that have the potential for destroying pastors.”
President, Making Life Count Ministries, Inc.
Author of Pastor Abusers: When Sheep Attack their Shepherd

“A defibrillator that delivers a therapeutic jolt of truth straight to the Christian heart!”
Pastor of St. Mark Lutheran Church
Ferndale, CA
Author of The Gift and the Defender

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