How One Church Has Embraced “The Table of the Pastor”

Dr. Darrell Paulk, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dublin, Georgia, has shared with me the way that he and the deacons have decided to embrace The Table of the Pastor from The Three Tables Model. My thanks to Dr. Paulk for sending this. I think this is well-thought-out and a helpful example of how the tables can be appropriated to various church structures and contexts, and I commend Darrell and his deacons for their work. Here is their language for this table:


First Baptist Church of Dublin, GA

Pastor’s Table: Deacon Responsibilities (12-29-22)

Of the Three Tables at which deacons serve, the Pastor’s Table is one of greater responsibility. While prayer for pastoral staff members will be an ongoing duty, those serving a term at this table remain constantly on-call, both individually and as a group, to help the pastor at his request. This group’s work can be sensitive in nature and may need to be kept confidential. Those serving at this table may be called upon to help meet needs such as…

General Help

  • Pray daily for the pastor and pastoral staff, along with their family members
  • Help with pastoral care needs (visiting the sick or bereaved, etc.) when the pastor is sick or away
  • Accompany the pastor when visiting a female alone in the home or in the hospital, whether she is older or younger
  • Serve as peacemakers in the church when given opportunity, by addressing expressed concerns and criticisms, diverting conflict, or by preventing misunderstandings when it is at all possible (this is a responsibility of every deacon)
  • As peacemakers, seek ways to shield the pastor from becoming embroiled in controversies

Situations of Special Concern

  • Serve as a pastor’s advisory team when he needs wise counsel concerning an issue or decision
  • Serve as a witness when the pastor meets with the disgruntled or when addressing accusations that are being/have been made against him
  • When church members choose to adopt sinful lifestyles that threaten the testimony of that individual and their church, accompany the pastor to lovingly hold that member accountable by calling them to repentance (“This should not be. How can we help and support you?”)
  • Assist the pastor in all matters of church discipline, from helping determine the level of disciplinary response to accompanying the pastor when a member must be removed from membership (a rare thing that acknowledges they have already effectively removed themselves from the church fellowship)
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