Any ideas on good websites for searching to fill Worship Pastor/Associate position in Atlanta area. Church size 250 and growing in a progressive suburb of Atlanta. Would love to find a summer intern. Assemblies of God - denomination.
We had just hired a worship pastor 10 months ago...it didn't work out for reasons I'm not able to share. No moral failure or anything, just some integrity issues. My husband (the pastor) is a bit apprehensive and doesn't want to make a wrong move. We could probably handle the role with lay leadership OR an intern through the summer to give him more time to seek the LORD and allow the "dust to settle".
This position is too important to intern. I think that Rick hit the nail on the head. Worship leader is not just a leader but a pastoral position, and for what I personally have observed in the Assemblies, they are very staff led, and usually they do not allow anyone that is not apart of their staff to lead worship even from their own body. That is just what I have observed in our findings. So why would they intern a position that they see as pastoral a staff position. I know that this could be directly related to the type of leadership they have in their church.
To me an intern is someone that you have for a Youth worship, or collage team that is still ministerial training for worship or somewhere else. Or someone that will leave after 3 months.
Me personally do not like the word intern, because I know that this is what many churches do to avoid having to pay someone. A servant is worthy of their hire, whether it is money for gas, or something for their time.
My brother did this for years in the church, and is an awesome worship leader and pastor now, but he did everything for the church from cleaning the toilets from the time he was 16 to working and repairing all of their computers of the church and showed that he was a worthy and accountable servant, and they never paid him for his time, and his responsibilities were getting in the way of even providing for himself, but being young and not knowing any better, he was trying so hard and being a pleaser thinking that is what he had to do to show that he was worth paying. I think that is absolutely wrong! These are young kids that have a passion to do the work of the Lord, and it is our job as a church that they are making wise decisions, not using their lack of experience in years to work for the church because they do not know any better and making them feel that they need to be available at our beckon call to show them selves worthy. And then get on to them about paying tithes and use that against them, when they are barely making it, and they are doing everything for the church for free. How does the church expect for them to learn principle if they can not show principle from the other side of things.
So let's stop and think about this for a moment. We are definitely not against interns, but lets have interns for all the right reasons, and intern should be someone that the church wants to take responsibility for, for them to grow and give them ministry experience, not to make them do the things no one wants to do, let's be respectful to them, the way that you require them to be respectful to you.
So, with that said, I hope that you that Rick was wrong as to why you are thinking about getting an intern. It takes a long time for the church to get used to someone and if you are just going to change it after summer, just use the worship leaders already on your team, it will be a better transition for your church.
Personally, If I were a pastor, I would not hire a worship leader from the outside. I would give ministry to those who are gifted within the church. It's not about professionalism (how great the music sounds) but God's anointing. We are a congregation of about 250 and all of our musicians, singers, and leaders are on a voluntary basis, other than the Sunday's worship leader who is also the youth pastor. Our praise, worship (and music) is awesome! I'm not saying that someone could not be hired as a full-time worship leader. But I believe that person should be from within the church itself.
I have heard a lot of pastors say that. I believe that you should always look into your surroundings and to the people in your body who have been faithful first before you hire from the outside, for one, the transitions are usually smoother, but sometimes not. My husband and I are always asked this question when we are in seminars with pastors, and they ask our take on that. It is really a case by case based.
In our experience in a church around your size even into the 450's, if your previous worship pastors or the style of ministry that is more leader driven and not driven by the team leadership concept, it can still be difficult to transition even still from your own body.
Here's is what we have found: :When the worship pastor is always leading and does not promote team leadership within the team even when He or She is leading, then we run in to problem with small church mentality, one leader for one event. And also in the band too! They have their band but are not willing to integrate others in to the worship team by taking turns, or make it too hard to become apart of the team, by too many rules regulations. But if we are constantly training other leaders and allowing them to lead while we are leading, it promotes stability and team ownership.
What we have run into in the past is pastors coming up to us saying we do not have anyone to lead while our worship pastor is out of town, and when we ask why, they say there are no other leaders in the group, and we ask why, and they tell us that our church is smaller and we do not have many that want to lead or lead enough to feel comfortable with leading a group. Ok that is typical in a small church, but it can be different with good leadership. But sometimes what we run into is, having a worship team with many members, but the worship leaders are not allowing others to lead, even when they have perfectly capable leaders that have the calling of God on their lives, and some pastors tend to not be patient enough to allow them to develop. If you are worship pastor, then your job is to pastor and let your team take the reigns, and you allowing them to do it, and with your guidance they will be awesome. We have to release them at one point or they will not grow. We have just seen so many pastors troubled by this. But we have to do just as a pastor does with new believers.
Ok, so for the part about hiring someone from the outside. When you hire someone from the outside, there needs to be cohesiveness that comes with it. And a lot pastors just do not have the quality of worship leadership that some of the larger churches have and that is why they need too to bring in a level of worship leadership that they may not have had before.
It can be a great thing for church, or it can be detrimental if we do not do things in a timely matter. We do not want to hire, then find out that they are not a good fit. You will know they are a good fit pretty much right off the bat, but sometimes their can be other things.
Some of the things that we have found is worship pastors tend to be really creative, but really bad at administration. So how do we handle that one? Well, that is your job as a pastor to give time to help that develop, and usually it is a very long time, because they see everything in a creative way not in an administrative way and we need to to have team leadership concept, many do all of the work and not one doing all of the work.
Some times we get into the guitar lead worship leaders and find out that they are really great at leading but really bad at directing the rest of the team. I would not have a worship pastor that did not know a little some thing about music, but if their leadership out weights the lack of knowledge and they are powerful and lead by the spirit, then they are teachable and can learn and develop more in that area, but we get less and less of that outside of the traditional church. That is when we turn to co-leadership, and co-labor-ship, cohesiveness.
There are so many situations and it is really about finding out what works for you. And that is why it takes sometimes so long for a pastor to make that decision. You want someone that is going to be a good reflection on the church, and someone that loves the worship team and someone that cares about their lives, and is in their lives, by writing notes of gratitude and just plain being friendly and loving towards those who serve voluntarily.
I would never hire a worship pastor from the outside unless the worship team really needed some additional support, and depending on what the pastor feels that the church would need. But in order for you to recruit your leader from the inside you have to have had the foundation in place where it will happen naturally.
I bet you have a wonderful worship team! It sounds great! God is so good!