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According to the 2012 Large Church Salary Report by Leadership Network, senior pastor salaries rose about 2% per year for the last two years, indicating that salaries for megachurch pastors have increased over the last two years after a short period of stagnation. For the most part, these pastors were found to be leading growing congregations. Leadership Network has been conducting salary surveys of large churches since 2001. The study is the largest-scale project of its kind. The network began looking into the salaries of megachurch leaders as many of them asked for salary comparisons with peer churches, Leadership Network’s Director of Research and Intellectual Capital Development, Warren Bird noted.
The 2012 report looked at salary trends for 209 megachurches — which is the highest number of participants since Leadership Network began the survey — all of the megachurches had a weekend worship attendance of at least 2,000. These surveyed churches are considered “game changer” churches or “pacesetting innovative churches.”