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In many Christian churches, an assistant pastor is a pastor-in-training, and in most cases, they are awaiting full ordination. In many instances, they are granted limited powers and authority to act with, or in the absence of, the congregation's Pastor. Some churches that have outreach programs, such as hospital visitations, in-home programs, prison ministries, or multiple chapels, will appoint assistant pastors to perform duties while the Pastor is busy elsewhere. Some churches use the title brother or ordained brother in place of assistant pastor. In larger Roman Catholic parishes, the duties of an assistant pastor can be broken up into duties performed by deacons and non-ordained lay people.
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