The importance of financial literacy was illuminated after the financial crisis of 2008. The disruption also illuminated the fact that many people had been trying to function within an economy by making decisions that they were ill-equipped to make due to a lack of knowledge and understanding. Some of the decisions that people made had repercussions that sent them into dire straits. Many people were struggling financially, others felt hopeless, and some sought out solace by going to a faith-based organization. Consequently, there is a dire need to master and teach financial literacy and our culture must be reshaped to be responsive to the scarcity of financial educational opportunities. Faith based organizations have accepted the clarion call to develop financial literacy programs to meet the needs of their parishioners. Faith based organizations look at people as living souls needing a helping hand out of a critical situation. Accordingly based upon the lived experiences of pastor leaders, the purpose of this study is to determine how successful financial literacy practices provided by faith-based organizations can serve as a roadmap to change financial behavior. This roadmap can serve parishioners and other faith-based organizations that would like to provide a similar type of financial literacy program. Accordingly, the purposes of this study is to identify (a) challenges and obstacles that pastors of financial literacy face on their leadership journey, (b) the strategies and practices pastors of financial literacy use to overcome the challenges in their leadership journey, (c) the ways in which pastors of financial literacy measure their leadership success, (d) the recommendations pastors of financial literacy have to offer other faith-based organizations that want to develop a financial literacy program. Through semi-structured interviews, this descriptive phenomenological study was to determine the strategies and best practices of teaching financial literacy in faith based organizations. A total of 15 pastors agreed to be a participant in this research study. There were a total of 38 themes that emerged from the respondents interviewed. There are very few scholarly research studies that address financial literacy within the church. This study will fill the gap and be a major contributor to the literature. Additionally, this study will give insight into how financial literacy should be addressed in the church informing pastoral leaders of the best practices and strategies.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (EdD) -- Organizational leadership; Religious institutions -- Management; Financial literacy -- Case studies; Pastors -- Case studies

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Madjidi, Farzin;