First Presbyterian (Colorado Springs) pastor draws on 100 years of ministry

bairdbookBy Leslie Massey

A substantial pile of burdens is placed on the shoulders of clergy every day. And those demands put ministers at an alarming risk for depression.

“The statistics show that something like 90 percent of pastors end up quitting the ministry,” said the Rev. Graham Baird, senior pastor of First Presbyterian Church in downtown Colorado Springs. “It’s basically just too hard.”

As a fourth-generation preacher, Baird has written a book that draws on the years of valuable experience from his own ministry as well as those of his great-grandfather, grandfather and father.

“One Hundred Years of Ministry” is a practical guide for pastors, designed to offer meaningful answers based on relevant stories, anecdotes, insights and inspiration. It is intended to help spiritual leaders with the everyday concerns and issues that today’s churches face.

Despite his background, Baird didn’t always aspire to join the clergy. “The last thing I wanted to be was a pastor,” he said. “I was going to work in a piano bar or the theater or maybe politics.”

His father didn’t push him to join the ministry, telling Baird, “If there’s anything else you want to do, please do it. It’s very challenging and if you don’t have the calling for it, you should not do it.”