Role Of Worship Pastor In The Church
In quite a few evangelical and charismatic churches there is another office besides the office of the Pastor and that is the office of the Worship Pastor. This is sort of a misnomer because the person who functions as the Worship Pastor should really be called the Praise Team Pastor as that would be a more accurate description of what this pastor actually does. But praise is understood as worship in most churches so we will keep the term "worship pastor".
The role of the worship pastor in the church has manifold expressions. They are not primarily a worship leader on stage, but primarily a true worshiper with a heart to multiply their worship example in the worship life of those in the whole church. This includes positively influencing worship leaders, the worship team, and also the congregation. Let us now look at the manifold expressions of service of a worship pastor.
First of all, the worship pastor should be a skillful equipper according to Ephesians 4:12: "to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ" ( English Standard Version ). Equip means "to furnish or provide with whatever is needed for use or for any undertaking." So what needs to be furnished to the saints so they can become the kind of worshipers that the FATHER desires? How to improve the worship ministry of the congregation?
Here are some of the ways that the congregation can be better equipped by the worship pastor for the worship ministry: 1. Give congregation complete teaching on worship and praise (this website has a lot), 2. Have "in congregation worship leaders" who are examples to the congregation of heaven's expressive praise and worship, 3. Provide the names of the worship songs on the church website that will be sung the following Sunday and Wednesday along with the lyric YouTube video in which each song is sung. Most songs are on YouTube.
The church members can be encouraged to sing the Youtube songs during the week during their personal devotions or as a family and therefore they will know the songs on Sunday mornings and the congregational worship will be much improved and people will enjoy the worship much better if they can sing the songs in church instead of fumbling with them.
Also, the worship pastor should be an example of praise and worship both within the congregation and an example to the worship leaders and worship team. In other words, he should inspire everyone in the church to love the Lord with their whole spirit, soul, and body in praise and worship. This should not be just in the area of singing, but in dancing also. He or she should be an example of whole person worship for the whole church.
A lead pastor who makes the mistake of choosing a worship pastor by looking at talent alone may end up having a situation similar to what happened in a church in California where the worship leader had an affair with one of the best friends of his worship leading wife, and then some time after that had an affair with his wife's other close friend. You do not want a worship pastor with this kind of lack of spiritual maturity even though they are talented.
A worship pastor should have some years of Christian maturity under his or her belt and should "get it" when it comes to knowing and being an example of what Heaven's worship and praise truly is. If they do not, then they will not be the full-orbed example to the congregation that they need to be. This Christian maturity ideally should include not only depth of worship expression but depth of wisdom and understanding of truth about worship that manifests in pastoral leadership by worship example according to 1 Peter 5:3.
I had a worship leader tell me that he did not know how to worship when he was not leading worship from the stage. This shows a real deficiency that ideally should be corrected in the one who is being considered for worship pastoral ministry. So ideally a worship pastor should have been a worship example in the congregation before he or she became a worship leader on stage. But you will never get a perfect worship pastor just like there is no perfect church.
To be continued.....