The entire month of Oct. is Clergy Appreciation Month, but the second Sunday in Oct. is known as Clergy Appreciation Day. Usually Clergy Appreciation Day falls on or between Oct. 8 and Oct. 14.
National Clergy Appreciation Day was designated in the United States in 1992 by Hallmark Cards to recognize and honor clergy which includes a wide range of formal and informal leadership positions such as pastors, preachers, priests, bishops, elders, and deacons, However, the specific names and roles of clergy vary by denominations and even by churches within denominations.
Some of the terms used for individual clergy are cleric, clergyman, clergywoman, clergyperson, and churchman.
This special day was set aside to lift up and encourage the clergy in Christian congregations.
According to Jeremiah 3:15, “Then I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding.”
The roles and functions of clergy vary in different religious traditions, but these usually involve presiding over specific rituals and teaching their religion’s doctrines and practices.
About 44,000 people serve as clergy in the United States, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
About 77% of Americans identify themselves as Christians, according to Gallup research.
Appreciate and honor your clergy on the second Sunday in Oct. However, it would be nice to let the appreciation continue after that one day.
Margaret MinnicksRichmond Christian Education Examiner
October 13, 2013