I have some trouble with the idea of addressing anyone as “Pastor So-and-so,” much less “The Reverend.” To me, these expressions fall under those Jesus banished in Matthew 23:8-12. Ditto for addressing Ph.D’s as “Doctor So-and-so.” (One radio preacher the other day: “People ask why I don’t use ‘Dr. Howard’ [or whatever] or even ‘the Rev. Dr. Howard.’ Know what I tell them? ‘I’m not even a nurse, much less a doctor.’” Amen.) And a definite no-no for any priest, seeking the honorary “Father.” Traditionally, Friends didn’t even use “Mr.” and “Mrs.” – and employed Doctor only in a professional relationship with a physician or dentist. Finding ways around these are not always easy, though. Care to really miff some puffy profs? (Might be healthy for them, though.)
Just listen to Elizabeth Bathurst (1655?-1685):
Thus it appears, that the Light of Jesus in the Conscience is no natural insufficient Thing, as some have sought to render it, being something of God placed in every Man, to witness against all Sin, convincing and reproving for that which is Evil; contrariwise, prompting, exciting and enclining to that which is good: So that as many as yield to the Motives of it, it is sufficient, not only to condemn and destroy, but also to justify and save; being a Measure of the living omnipotent Power of that One Law-giver, who is able to save, as well as to destroy, see James iv. 12. which Power is Christ, as saith the Apostle, 1 Cor. i. 23, 24. We preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a Stumbling-block, and unto the Greeks Foolishness; but unto them that are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the Power of God, and the Wisdom of God: Who, as he was once manifest in the Flesh, so now is he manifest in the Spirit, to be that Covenant of Light, which the Father promised by the Mouth of his Holy Prophet, Isa. xlii. 6. And this Light, Power and Arm is, in measure, extended and reached forth, at one Time or other, unto all People, for the gathering unto him, in whom the Election stands; that so as many as obey his Call, in yielding themselves to be gathered by this gathering Arm, may make their Election, and consequently, their Salvation sure in him: For this is he who would have gathered Jerusalem, and saved her from that Ruin and Destruction which afterwards came upon her, because she knew not the Time of her Visitation: ‘Tis the very same Jesus and no other, whom we believe in for our Saviour, who by his spiritual Appearance in the Hearts of the Children of Men, gives Light, gives Life, gives Power and Victory over Sin, to as many as follow the Leadings and Guidance of this immaculate Lamb) for ’tis given to the Lamb and his Followers to overcome; and whoso overcometh, shall sit down with the Lamb in his Throne, and live and reign with him for evermore: Even the same which was with his Church in the Wilderness, being that spiritual Rock that followed them, of which they drank by the Way, and were refreshed in him, who is the Rock of Ages, the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the first and the last; the Ancient of Days; whose Dominion is an everlasting Dominion, which shall not pass away, and his Kingdom that which shall not be destroyed; whose Goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting: For he is the blessed and only Potentate, King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, who only hath Immortality and eternal Life; to whom be Glory and Honour, Dominion and Power, henceforth and for ever.
Here now you have a Description, and that in Scripture Dialect, concerning the Principle of our Faith; something I have writ as to the Nature of it, which, though at first it causeth Grief, and brings in Sorrow upon the Soul, yet doth this Sorrow work Repentance, never to be repented of; after which cometh reviving: So that it was truly said, tho’ Weeping may endure for a Night, yet Joycometh in the Morning; for they that sow in Tears shall reap in Joy; he that goeth forth weeping, bearing precious Seed, shall doubtless come again rejoicing, bringing his Sheaves with him. And such shall truly say, In the Lord have we Righteousness and Strength; for in the Lord shall all the Seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory (in him) not in Wisdom, Wealth, nor Strength, but in this, that they know him to be the Lord, who exerciseth Loving-kindness, Judgment and Righteousness in the Earth, as saith the Prophets. And this is he whom we acknowledge to be our Judge and Law-giver; yea, he is our King, and he will save us: For to this End he hath appeared by his Light in our Hearts, and for this End doth he appear in the Hearts of all Men, that as many as bow down to the Measure of his Appearance in them, may thereby see and be enabled to forsake their Ways and Doings, which have not been good, whereby they may be saved from Sin; and by the same saving Power and Spirit in their Hearts, come to be led into the Way of all Truth, which Way of Truth is Christ, our Mediator and Intercessor with the Father, through whom Man comes to be accepted of God, as he cometh into him, in whom alone the Father is well pleased: For ’tis no other Jesus, concerning whom I write, but the same that was born of the Virgin, even the Lord’s Christ, who hath made himself known unto his Servants by such peculiar Names as suited the particular Circumstances of their Souls; and according to their several Experiences of him, so they reported concerning him, Isaiah describes him to be as the Shadow of a great Rock in a weary Land, a Resuge from Heat, a Cover from Rain and from Storms, Chap. iv. Vers. 6. and Chap. xxxii. Vers. 2. Again, he speaks of his being to his People, as a Place of broad Rivers and Streams, Chap. xxxiii. Vers. 21. David calls him the Shepherd of Israel, which leadeth Joseph like a Flock, Psal. lxxx. 1. He also calls him the Watchman of Israel, who neither slumbers nor sleeps, Psal. cxxi. 4. Paul speaks of his being our High-Priest, yea, a Priest for ever, after the Order of Melchizedeck, Heb. v. 6. And likewise calls him the Minister of the Sanctuary, and of the true Tabernacle which God hath pitched, Chap. viii. 2.