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Difference Between Minister and Pastor

Minister vs Pastor

There are many names given to the preachers of the faith. Across many specific religions, the roles and titles of these people may somehow vary. So many people become confused with the terms: priest, reverend, pastor, and minister. It is probably the pastor and the minister that have the most confusing distinction.

In the Bible, it is clearly defined that a pastor is a person holding an office. He must meet a certain criteria or qualification in order for him to become one. In the book of Titus and 1st Timothy, a pastor is described chiefly as an elder. The term itself is derived from the Greek word “poimain,” which literally means “shepherd.” In the first chapter of Titus, pastors must be appointed in every city or district. As such, they must act as the area’s overseers. Paul’s conversation to a group of elders is also stated in the book of Acts with him exclaiming to the group that they have been regarded as the overseers who’ll shepherd God’s church. This clearly shows that a pastor is an elder.

Furthermore, Titus 1:5-9 also highlights the other important qualifications of a pastor. First, he must be a man above reproach. Second, he must be wed to only one wife. Third, he must possess the following qualities: prudent, temperate, hospitable, respectable, knows how to teach, not a wine addict, non-aggressive, peace loving, gentle, and not easily enslaved by the passion of money. Fourth, he should be the father of his very own household. Lastly, he shouldn’t be a newly converted individual and must bear irrefutable respect from people outside the church.

In the Roman Catholic sense, the pastor is the priest of a certain parish (one single church community) unlike in the Protestant sense wherein it is more of a job title offered to someone who is able to work as the religious head. In addition, ministers are generally found in the Protestant setup. To become one, this person should have been officially ordained. He can be an ordained minister but is not immediately assumed to perform the duties of a pastor whereas a pastor is already assumed to be able to perform the duties of a minister. When you become ordained as a minister, it means that you have been duly acknowledged as a trusted, religious figure or authority.


1.The term “pastor” means an “elder, overseer or shepherd.”
2.The pastor of the Roman Catholic Church is the priest of the parish.
3.The pastor of the Protestant Church is the religious leader. It’s more of a job position or title.
4.The term “minister” means “preacher.” All pastors can perform the duties of a minister, but not all ministers can act as pastors.

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  1. My pastor is a woman. Why is everything in this difference between… state everything in the masculine (he/him)??

  2. “I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man” – 1 Timothy 2:12

    • God deals with the spirit, not the gender, He will use whomever is willing, even a rock, so long as the vessel will submit themselves to Him for the Master’s use.

      • Well, that’s false. Despite there are no female preachers within a church setting throughout the bible, you would have to show proof to validate your view.
        It’s non existent because I’m sure you and I read from the same scripture so you have nothing to show other than scriptures that you flipped to make it comfortable for you. Plus you have people who listen to you so they’re not tell you your incorrect due to false teaching so you see fit to continue falsely holding a position you shouldn’t.

        God doesn’t contradict. Every person is equal in salvation. But it is wrong to extend this to say that equality extends to all roles assigned by God to men and women.

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