If you stand still long enough you can hear the sound of the pendulum continuing to swing back and forth in evangelical Christianity. History teaches us that Evangelicalism is a series of (over)corrections. In his recent article “Why We Need More ‘Chaplains’ and Less Leaders” Mark Galli’s words suggest an over correction and if you think about his words you can hear the ever familiar “shwoosh” of the pendulum. Certainly we can affirm the potential abuses and the unrealistic expectations of the leader/CEO model for pastors. Likewise we must affirm the need of a pastoral heart in all of our church leaders.From my point of view, however, the issue is not chaplain versus leader. This makes the issue too “person-centric” and not enough “group-centric”. In the chaplain versus leader debate the issue becomes more and more about how a single person makes all the difference in the life of a congregation. It seems to me that it is healthier to think about how God in his sovereignty graces a local church with numerous gifts and never all in one person. A more collaborative approach to pastoral ministry is needed.Over the years I have been blessed, challenged and even frustrated by a lead pastor who was a chaplain. Whenever he spoke it felt like we were having a conversation one-on-one in my living room. Likewise I have experienced what it is like to sit under the ministry of a lead pastor who was a gifted evangelist. At other times I have experienced the blessing of a lead pastor who was more of a teacher and at other times one who was a great visionary. I have learned from each of these pastors and whenever I became frustrated, and inevitably this was the case, it was because either I was expecting each of them to be all things for me or the church culture did not facilitate and empower the vital expression of others who had different gifts.All pastors should minister from their strengths and gifting but that will inevitably mean that there are blind spots in our ministry that only others called and gifted by God can fulfill. Each church will need to decide what kind of person it needs in the position of lead pastor at any given time in its existence. But the issue is never do we need leaders or chaplains. Of course we need leaders and chaplains. If you are a lead pastor and you are gifted as a chaplain your challenge is going to be allowing those who are best wired to lead the opportunity to lead. If you are a leader as a pastor your challenge will be in making sure that effective care is taking place within your church.The problem in both will come down to expectations. In most churches the unspoken expectation is that the person talking at the front of the room will be all things for all people and will be able to provide all forms of necessary leadership for the life of the church. This is utter foolishness but it is the unspoken expectation. Perhaps we should all wear tights and a cape on Sunday morning. The problem, however, does not just rest with the unspoken expectations of others. Most pastors that I know wrestle with personal expectations of wanting to be all things for all people. This too is utter foolishness.So yes if you are a chaplain and called by God to ministry to a particular congregation “chaplain”well for the glory of God allowing others to exercise their God-given gifts. If you don’t and if your congregation doesn’t allow for this people will be cared for (up to a certain size) but the mission of your church will be underemphasized. Be who you are, no one else and don’t put yourself in a church context where you need to have a different gift set.My thoughts.