I started writing my book Untapped Church before COVID hit the world stage. I finished the book from my basement during lockdown. Now that we seem to be emerging out of the blast zone of the pandemic, and many church leaders are sorting through the wreckage trying to find a way forward, I believe more than ever that high-capacity volunteer leaders are the answer for what lies ahead. The stage has been set for pastors to build their staff not just with paid workers, but with high capacity volunteers who will serve the church without a salary. Here are 4 reasons why the post-Covid church provides the perfect environment for you to consider this innovation.
1. People are re-evaluating their purpose in life.
The pandemic disrupted everything. People are changing jobs at a record pace. They are leaving big cities in favor of the country. They are moving out of their homes and closer to family. With sickness and death in the news on endless repeat, people are re-evaluating what is most important in life. In the midst of the upheaval, questions about personal calling and life’s purpose have come to the forefront. It’s a perfect time to offer someone heart-pounding assignment on your team that has eternal implications.
2. Churches are re-inventing roles and structures.
Not only are people in your congregation reconsidering their priorities, most church leaders are as well. The pandemic necessitated a re-imagining of how we do church. Most pastors are currently strategizing for the future and considering what to do with online services and small groups. What should in-person gathering look like? How about kids, and youth, and discipleship, and community engagement? While you are restructuring your ministry, why not create some high-capacity volunteer roles on your team. You don’t need paid staff in every key position.
3. Remote work has given your congregation more freedom with their schedule.
In previous years, it has been difficult for professional workers, especially in larger cities, to engage in high-capacity volunteer roles at their church. Extensive work hours at the office and long commute times were a prohibitive factor in church involvement. With many companies now allowing at least partial remote work, its an opportunity for pastors to re-approach those busy people with intriguing new ministry roles. Instead of that side-hustle they’ve been considering, they could invest the 10 hours of commute time they are saving each week in a leadership role at church.
4. More church ministries can be led from afar.
Some churches were sitting on the fence about digital ministry before COVID. Now nearly everyone in the world is an expert at Zoom, Teams, and Facebook Live. This new digital comfort level opens up tremendous opportunities for high capacity volunteers to serve from afar. A teenager could lead your social media ministry from home. A former member who moved to another state could lead your life group ministry. Your cousin from across the ocean could lead your video editing team to new heights. Suddenly the possibilities are endless.