Why did Van Gogh stop being a pastor
In December 1879, Vincent began his career as an evangelist. He arrived at the Borinage looking like a ‘clean Dutchman’, but he quickly found that to engage the people of this region, he would need to become one of them. In wanting to follow the example of Christ, Vincent intended to form relationships with the people he had been entrusted, regardless of who they were or what they did. He had desired to live out the gospel in a real and meaningful way. So Vincent moved out of his modest dwelling and into a hut, where he slept on a straw mattress. He gave his money, food and warm clothes to the needy.
He was self-sacrificing, determined in his convictions and was not moved by other people’s opinions. He preached the word of God and followed through with actions of love. He nursed the sick, prayed, taught the bible, then helped with the chores.
He wanted to follow the biblical scripture, to lay down one’s life,
“My commandment is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”(John 15:12–13).
This passion Vincent had, to forsake all for the poor, made the people of the religious institution very uncomfortable.
He Was Removed From His Position
The head of the mission saw Vincent’s behaviour as excessive; they did not approve of Van Gogh taking the teachings of Christ so literally. After the trial period had ended, the Committee for the Evangelical Protestant Churches judged Vincent ‘too extreme’ and they would not continue their support.