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New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

"A Liturgy for Morning Prayer," Upper Room Worshipbook

Used by permission from the Book of Common Worship, © 2018 Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved. This prayer appears in “A Liturgy for Morning Prayer” in Upper Room Worshipbook.

Pastoral Pause

A Practical Guide to Renewal Leave

Greg Pimlott • August 2024

BUY Print $19.99

Take a break before you shatter.

In the demanding realm of pastoral ministry, where energy fades and the threat of burnout is ever-present, pastor Greg Pimlott offers a lifeline. With disarming humor and refreshing honesty, Pimlott invites us into his own transformative journey from burnout to spiritual revitalization, providing encouragement, inspiration, and practical tools for other pastors on the brink of exhaustion and considering a renewal leave.

From his candid account of the moment he realized he needed a break, to a life-changing encounter deep in the New Mexico desert, Pimlott shares poignant glimpses of life before, during, and after his leave to inspire his fellow clergy. Along the way, he provides spiritual and practical resources such as renewal leave checklists, budget-planning tools, book lists, reflection prompts, liturgies, and devotions to equip others on their journeys.

Pastors, facing the challenges of strained relationships, waning creativity, and diminishing spiritual reserves, will find solace and guidance in this invaluable and relatable resource. Take a break before you shatter — Pastoral Pause is your indispensable companion on the journey to self-renewal.


Greg Pimlott is an ordained elder in the United Methodist Church and has served five UMC churches in the past 18 years. Prior to graduating with a Master of Divinity and a Certificate in Black Church Studies from Candler School of Theology, Pimlott served as a missionary in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Appalachian Kentucky. He lives in Indiana with his family.



ISBN: 978-0-8358-2056-1

Imprint: Upper Room Books

Pub Date: August 2024

Trim Size: 5x8

Page Count: 192

BISAC Categories:

BISAC1: REL074000 RELIGION / Christian Ministry / Pastoral Resources  Ext. Cat. 2:

BISAC2: REL014000 RELIGION / Christian Church / Administration

BISAC3: REL012070 RELIGION / Christian Living / Personal Growth

"With the latest statistics on pastor and leadership burnout, this work by Pastor Greg comes at a pivotal point. His rich story, intermixed with practical and effective tools for addressing burnout, make this book a must read for any leader facing today's climate."
— Rev. Dr. Ron Bell, Director of Healing & Resilience, The Upper Room

“For the weary pastor plagued by over-work, depleting inner reserves, and vocational burnout, Pimlott offers a practical guide for an intentional and holy renewal leave, including personal stories, planning lists, brainstorming prompts, and devotional practices. Pastoral Pause is a timely gift to pastors and congregations committed to life-giving leaves and healthy returns.”
— Rev. Mark Feldmeir, author of Life After God, and Sr. Pastor of St. Andrew United Methodist Church, Highlands Ranch, Colorado

Pastoral Pause is an essential read for pastors confronting burnout and seeking renewal. With heartfelt anecdotes and practical advice, Pimlott offers a roadmap for planning and executing a rejuvenating sabbatical. This book not only validates the spiritual necessity of taking breaks but also provides the tools and insights for sustaining effective ministry. A blend of narrative and guidance, Pastoral Pause is a valuable resource for clergy aiming to rejuvenate their passion and commitment to their calling.”
— Rev. Cameron Trimble, author, Searching for the Sacred, and CEO of Convergence, an international church consultancy