Southern Baptist pastors and their wives struggling through personal or professional crises have a confidential place to turn, thanks to a long-term partnership between the North American Mission Board and Focus on the Family. 

The Pastor care line — dedicated exclusively to Southern Baptist pastors and their wives, chaplains and missionaries — is toll-free at 1-844-PASTOR1. Calls are answered by Focus on the Family Help Center and remain completely confidential. No information about the name of the pastor or the church will be provided to NAMB. 

NAMB partnered with Focus on the Family in part because the ministry has decades of experience hosting a pastor crisis care line. Focus began the ministry in 1992 under the leadership of H.B. London. 

Pastors call the care line for a variety of personal and professional reasons such as family problems, emotional issues and leadership crises — any issue for which a pastor needs safe, biblically-informed counsel. Pastors also have called the care line for counsel about how to deal with mental health problems that have arisen within their congregation that go beyond their training. 

The phone line is available weekdays between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. Eastern time, with counseling available in English and Spanish. The worker answering the call will listen to and pray for the pastor. If there is a further need, the call will be referred to a counseling team. A chaplain or a counselor will return the pastor’s call within 24 to 48 hours for an initial consultation. Because of the NAMB-sponsored prayer line, SBC pastors will have priority in this process. Crisis calls — if a pastor mentions imminent danger of harm to himself or others — will immediately get routed to the counseling team. 

Published March 8, 2023