Refuge Church

The Heart of the Process

ARefuge Church is a grace-based church that understands the importance of extending hope to those who are wounded in life. It is a place of protection and security in time of trouble, instability, and loss. In this environment, terminated pastors feel the freedom to be vulnerable and honest. Here, the exited pastor and family can work through their sense of loneliness and rejection.

Refuge Churches provide care and compassion in the concrete form of people who are unwilling to let a pastor's pain go unaddressed and his family's needs unmet. A Refuge Church seizes the opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus to an exited pastor and family; displaying the love that Jesus said would mark His disciples. It provides a haven where spiritual strength and stability are recovered, and a safe place where the journey into the next chapter of life and ministry can begin.

How It Works


  • 01

    A Refuge Church receives a ministry family into its fellowship for a period of 6 – 12 months, displaying the love of Christ in practical ways.

  • 02

    A Support Team from within the congregation is appointed to meet with the ministry family on a regular basis in small group format.


  • 03

    The Refuge Church supports the ministry family as they make the many adjustments in daily living that come with being exited.

  • 04

    The ministry family is integrated into the life of the church and community where they might take an active part in local ministry.


  • 05

    The Refuge Church encourages their ministry family through prayer, hospitality and listening care as they prepare to be restored.

  • 06

    Finally, the Refuge Church simplifies the return of a ministry family to vocational ministry when they are restored.

What Is Provided


Training is provided for the Support Team of a Refuge Church, once that team has been identified.


PIR provides all the materials that are necessary for the Support Team to function and thrive.

Pro D Assessment

A PRO-D assessment is provided for both the Pastor in Residence and his/her spouse.


Ongoing support is provided to the Refuge Church and ministry family during the course of the process.


Information and resources are provided for the church leadership, as they oversee the process.


PIR connects the Pastor in Residence and family to places of retreat and counsel.


Pastors and churches everywhere can participate in the Pastor-in-Residence program. Pastors and churches that are currently engaged as Refuge Churches include:

Evangelical Presbyterian


World Relief

Independent Congregations

The Missionary Church

Presbyterian Church of America

Evangelical Covenant Church

Southern Baptist Church

Refuge Churches established in the last 5 years

“It was a transforming time for the pastor, his wife and our support team.”
– Tim Erickson, Senior Pastor

Make Your Church a Place of Refuge

PIR Ministries is always seeking churches interested in serving as Refuge Churches to the exited pastors among us. Are you ready to restore hope to at risk and exited pastors?

Get Started Today