It's often hard to be married to someone in the ministry. Your life is filled with expectations — from everyone you know and many you have never met. And typically, they don't match your own expectations and dreams for yourself. How do you find balance and sanity? The following articles are provided to encourage you, challenge you and assist you as you cope with being married to a pastor.

(If you are married to a female pastor, we apologize that we have not found many appropriate articles for your unique situation. If you would care to submit one, we would welcome it.)

After the Shock

When the shock wears off after you have discovered your pastor-husband is ensnared by pornography, what do you do? A pastor's wife offers advice and caution.

The Air We Breathe

Kelly wondered if her husband, Steve, would remember their 10th anniversary. Some years he had forgotten. But, this year, he remembered. He had found just the right card, and he was sure it would be a great anniversary. When he handed her the card, she beamed from ear to ear. But when she read it, her countenance turned sour and dark.

Appreciating Your Husband as Your Pastor

Clergy Appreciation Month gives me pause to look at MY pastor ... my HUSBAND! Do I really give him the respect and honor that he deserves?

The Art of Compromise

Every marriage involves give and take, and in order for a marriage to grow, both spouses must practice the art of compromise. For couples in ministry, it's especially vital to work out these issues together.

Cheap Thrills

Having a regular date night doesn't mean having to spend a wad of money. With a little creativity, you can enjoy a regular night out with your mate -- even if money is tight.

Cocooning in Crisis

How does a couple survive a crisis in life that at times completely knocks them off their feet. To strengthen a relationship, ease heartache and deepen love for each other through the shared pain, a couple needs to cocoon together.

Fill Her Up

A well-known expert of pastors' wives shares some insights and suggestions on how pastors can help energize their wives in ministry.

For Pastor-Husbands Only!

If you take the time to truly know your spouse — what she likes and dislikes, what makes her tick and ticked and tickled — you'll both be better for it. And so will your ministry. A missionary wife makes suggestions on how to keep your wife healthy and feeling loved.


A minister's wife can find friends in the strangest places -- like church.

The High Chair Day

My list of things to do seemed to be growing out of control. Pastoring two churches, my husband often worked 60 to 80 hours each week, and I was increasingly frazzled as ministry spouse and almost-single parent. In greater martyr moments, I felt I did everything but stomp the grapes for communion.

How to Encourage Your Pastor's Wife

On a white, northeast winter Sunday, while her children and husband were in church, the pastor's wife committed suicide in the parsonage. When I heard the news, a chilling wave rose in my heart, then settled like gray dust all over my thoughts.

How to Fall in Love Every Day

Inspiring fresh feelings of romance takes commitment and creativity, but you can do it. A pastor's wife offers everyday suggestions for igniting your marriage with love.

If the Mask Fits, Don't Wear It

Starting in adolescence, we learn to rely on superficial identities that define our place in the world. As we mature, our masks become more sophisticated and entrenched in our personalities.

It Wasn't Even Monday

Tired. If you're a ministry wife, that's probably a common word for you. Here's how you can get back on your spiritual toes.

Lois Evans: Connecting With Pastors' Wives

As a pastor's wife, Lois Evans develops The First Lady Ministry, her outreach to pastors' wives.

Love and Alzheimer's

No one would doubt the preciousness of Muriel McQuilkin's life — until her decline into the darkness of Alzheimer's disease. Muriel spent the last decade of her life battling Alzheimer's, while her husband, Robertson, battled critics of his decision to stay home with her.

Making Friends When You're a Ministry Wife

Forty-five percent of ministry wives do not have a close friend. For some the role of pastor's wife negatively shapes and stifles the development of personal friendships. Here's how to not be one of them.

Ministering to the Minister

I sometimes feel that people are shocked to discover that my husband has limitations, that he has the same number of hours in his day that they do in theirs.

More Than Surviving

I told God that if something didn't ease this pain soon, I was going to explode. It had been two months since my husband's death, and I wasn't sure I could physically endure much longer. How can a pastor's wife move forward after the death of her husband?

On the Move

Nearly 60 percent of all ministers' wives are in the work force. But what happens to their careers when their husbands are called to ministries in other cities, states or time zones?

One Ordinary Woman

How a pastor's wife came to terms with being married to a pastor. "Our marriage has presented me with countless opportunities to choose whether I was going to be sacrificial, unselfish and loving or demanding, selfish and self-absorbed."

The One Sided Marriage

My husband was absent from dinner again. I could see him at the other end of the table, but he couldn't see me. For two years his mind had been elsewhere.

Passing it On

While churches often do their best to recognize your spouse during Clergy Appreication Month, only you know how much your wife does to support you.

Prayer: Women Armed and Dangerous!

One thing that I did not see clearly, and therefore didn't practice completely, was my role as the woman God chose to cover my "man of God" with prayer.

Riding the Ministry-Family Seesaw

Advice to a pastor's wife who feels resentful of the time that ministry seems to demand from her husband. Your goal should not be to "steal him back" from ministry but to help him find a balance between home and work.

The Rock and the Rolling Stone

So how does a rolling stone dwell peacefully together with an immovable rock? Very carefully. When I'm sensitive to her need for security, she's more responsive to my need for change.

A Safe Haven Home

Neither parent saw Johnny's tears as he clutched his baseball in hope of playing with Dad. Neither did they hear their 15-year-old daughter slam her bedroom door to shut out the hostility.

A Salute to the Pastor's Wife

Conversations, letters and surveys tell us the concerns you wives in ministry have. About 45 percent of you fear physical, emotional and spiritual burnout. Nearly 60 percent of you work outside the home. Some 45 percent of you tell us you have no close friends. And more than half of you worry about raising your children.

The Separation of Church and Mate

How involved should the minister's spouse be in the church? That depends on who you ask.

She Says — He Says

Romance helps me focus on my most important relationship next to Christ. Romance causes me to spend time thinking about my wife and prods me to be sensitive to her needs as I look for ways to express my love for her.


I was excited for my husband's new ministry. But when we moved, the walls started to close in. We went from a three-bedroom house to an apartment that seemed about the size of a jail cell.

Smooth Sailing

The ebb and flow of ministry doesn't need to swamp your marriage. God gave me a wife with whom I could be a partner in ministry. Together we led a weekly Bible study. We entertained church leaders and new members in our home, sharing in the planning, cooking and cleanup. We loved each other. We loved our congregation. We loved our identity as a ministry couple.

Through a Cracked Door…

Passing the partially opened door of my pastor’s bedroom one evening, I saw a sight I’ve never forgotten. I was a teenager at the time and I’d been invited to spend the night in the parsonage. That evening, through the cracked door, I saw him and his wife on their knees by their bed, pouring out their hearts to the Lord. It was the private side of a successful public ministry — and I was deeply moved.

Time to Slow Down

Busy people rarely give their best to the ones they love — they serve leftovers. "Overcommitment and exhaustion are the most insidious and pervasive marriage killers you will ever encounter as a couple."

The Tony Award

It takes time and communication to get to know each other. And if you don't speak up about your needs and give your husband a chance to listen to you, we set ourselves up to harbor bitterness. You will appreciate these suggestions from a pastor's wife on how to communicate your feelings to your pastor-husband.

Two-Part Harmony

Ever since we married 34 years ago, we wanted regularly to pray and read the Bible as a couple. But for 15 years, no matter how often we tried, we couldn't establish a habit.

United We Stand

Who can find a virtuous wife? For her worth is far above rubies. I don't feel like my husband found one. At least, not today . . . well, not this week . . . okay, so maybe longer. Worth? Somewhere around a "cat's eye" marble.

What Pastors' Wives Wish Their Husbands Knew About Them

Contrary to popular belief, pastor's wives are not auditioning for the role of Superwoman. Mark and I try to set goals and priorities together and then work to achieve them.

When Couples Are Cruel

Summer cookouts can be great fun with friends — unless they're barbecuing each other. I endured one of those backyard battles one night. John and Mary arrived a little late and wasted no time skewering each other.

Why Be a Woman of the Word?

Encouragement for women to make God's word the center of their daily lives.

A Work in Progress

The husband's role of spiritual leader takes time to grow into. Remember to be patient with each other during this process. Don't give up on your desires for a godly marriage. Instead, prayerfully set reasonable expectations and, with God's help, work together to make them reality.