The SBC Compensation Study reports on this page are based on a survey done in 2006.

Note that data below is from the 2006 SBC Compensation Study. The 2006 data will continue to be available temporarily.
Click here to access the 2008 SBC Compensation Study.

2006 SBC Compensation Study
This survey of compensation of ministers, office personnel & custodians of Southern Baptist churches was conducted as a joint project of SBC state conventions in cooperation with GuideStone Financial Resources, SBC. Reports are based on compensation for 17,350 individuals serving 7,095 SBC churches in all 50 states.

While this data is made available with respect for the autonomy of each local church, the information can help a church be objective in considering appropriate staff compensation.
Use menu options below to view reports based on data from all states or for a selected state convention(s). All amounts are annual amounts based on 2006 compensation. Cost of living adjustments should be made when using the data in subsequent years.

A key feature of this study is the CUSTOMIZED REPORT. It provides reports for only those churches of similar attendance, membership and budget to your own.

The 2006 study includes a new report that addresses the question of what percentage of a church’s budget normally goes for staff compensation and benefits.

Compensation Data in churches of comparable size & financial resources as your church.
Summary Report for ALL Records on File by Positions
Summary Report for STAFF MINISTERS (Non-Pastor) by Positions
Report Based on AVERAGE ATTENDANCE of Church
Report Based on RESIDENT MEMBERSHIP of Church
Report Based on Church's BUDGET (or Annual Receipts)
Report Based on EDUCATION of Employee
Report Based on EXPERIENCE of Employee
Report Based on AGE of Employee
Report of MISCELLANEOUS Information
Report on PERCENTAGE OF BUDGET Used for Staff Compensation

For GuideStone Financial Resources dealing with financial support for church employees, click here.
Click here for answers to FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS about the compensation study.

The SBC Compensation Study is a project of State Conventions in the Southern Baptist Convention. GuideStone Financial Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention participates with the various state conventions to conduct this study of clergy compensation. GuideStone Financial Resources was formally know as the Annuity Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. GuideStone Financial Resouces works with Southern Baptist Churches regarding compensation for clergy and for other church employees. Some use the term clergy compensation and other use ministerial compensation or compensation for ministers and church staff. This study survey compensation which includes salary, minister’s housing, retirement and insurance. Each state convention sends out compensation study forms. Compensation study data is compiled. Housing Allowance for ministers is included. This study allows for the unique IRS rules for clergy compensation. The minister’s housing may include Fair Rental Value of a parsonage. The minister’s housing may include Utilities paid by the church. Finally for ministers the housing includes the housing allowance paid to the minister as part of their pay package. The pay package includes compensation which is salary and housing allowance for ministers. Ministry related expenses are not included as part of the pay package. Minister related expenses are paid in addition to the compensation of ministers and church employees. The SBC compensation study provides data about pay – including salary and benefits – for ministers and for all church employees. These church employees are employed by Southern Baptist churches. The SBC compensation study is conducted every two years. This year is the second time all 41 SBC state conventions participated in the joint compensation study of compensation for clergy and other church staff. Some state conventions have participated in the salary and compensation study in previous years. Salary for ministers is only part of their compensation. It is an important part of minister’s finances but it is only a part of their total financial support. Some parts of the minister’s compensation must reflect the unique IRS rules that apply to clergy. Not everyone is fully aware of the unique IRS rules that apply to ministers. IRS Publication 517 addresses these unique tax laws for ministers. Planning their financial support package or pay package is an important part of financial planning for ministers. It is the most important part of financial planning most ministers will ever do. Financial planning is important for clergy but setting up their pay package so their salary and minister’s housing is structured correctly is critical. It is the most critical part of their financial planning. Various other web sites have information on minister’s housing, pay package, compensation, social security for ministers and ministry related expenses for ministers and church employees. Some of these issues apply only to ministers and some apply to all church employees. Non Southern Baptist churches can use this data because the pay packages for their ministers and church staff will often be similar. Although GuideStone Financial Resources exists primarily to serve Southern Baptist churches, many other churches and ministers look to GuideStone for guidance on issues regarding clergy compensation and ministerial tax issues.