Church Communications resources and tips from Justin Dean

Leadership During Christmas

A Christmas Spectacular like this would be a big project for any church to organize. But what made this one so much more complicated was the short turnaround and the new leadership that came on staff. had been organizing the event annually for a few years. They saw it as a way to reach out to the community, and it?s currently the largest thing that happens during Christmas in their town. So there was a lot of expectation and legacy surrounding the event.

So in November, when the new creative arts pastor, lighting director, and audio engineer came on staff, there was a lot to get done in a short amount of time. And there was a lot of learning and compromise that had to take place on everyone?s end. It?s always hard to come into a new church?much more a new church with a beloved tradition like this.

A lot of the leadership success in this event came from the fact that they relied on a team to make many of the decisions. Many of the ideas came from brainstorming meetings and worship team volunteers. They were able to feel invested in the program because their ideas were part of the process.

There was only one special number they had to scrap because it wasn?t working. It was sensitive because it was a volunteer?s pet project. But they navigated the waters by valuing the piece and explaining they just couldn?t make it happen this year. They?re really hoping to use the number this year.

Trent, the worship leader, relied on their volunteer base quite a bit. He relied on volunteers? giftings and expertise on many things. They were involved in designing loops, choosing auxiliary percussion instruments (and even building), and bringing in contacts for dance teams and string players.

They involved so many volunteers because they knew it would take a lot of people to pull off these seven services across three days. Their volunteer team included the folks involved in the music, backstage personnel, camera operators, control room operators, and scenic production volunteers. This meant a lot of late nights during rehearsals.

It required quite a bit of inspiration and coaching to keep the volunteers motivated.

Beyond that, it required a great system of communication. They communicated early and thoroughly to each team member. They were careful to have information on instrumentation, arrangements, stage placement, getting loops to their engineer to test them, number of IEM?s needed, which string players would be at which rehearsals, and knowing when the dance teams would be available to rehearse.

There were so many moving pieces?including a brand new lighting, acoustical, and sound system installed a month before the whole production.

So yes. There were storms. But they weathered the storms. At the end of the whole production, each team had the feeling that they were able to move mountains. That led to so much growth in every department.

Great pains, handled well, produce great growth.

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