Your pastor is always juggling his time. Pastoring is a thankless job with hundreds of people vying for his precious little time. It is challenging to have so many people in need; setting priorities and boundaries can be difficult. He wants to make everyone happy but he still needs to prepare for Sunday and lead the church.
There have been mountains of articles and books written on how to be a great leader. Many focus on how to lead well and utilize time wisely. Even the Bible tells us about “making the most of your time.” (Ephesians 5:16 NASB) Here are a few ways you can help him save time by using video to offload tasks from him and free him to do what he does best: shepherd, lead, and pastor.
#1 – Video Membership Class
How many of our pastors (especially of smaller churches) are personally responsible for teaching a membership class? He and his sweet wife sit in the prayer room after church on Sunday with several prospective members to go over the statement of faith, the giving expectations, ministries, and on and on. Chances are he’s done it a hundred times and will do it a hundred more.
What if you could film your pastor giving that talk and play it for the class? I can hear it now, “What about the personal touch?” Actually, if you show a video of your pastor giving the membership talk, it frees him to pop in for a meet and greet. Now a two-hour slot on his calendar transformed into ten minutes. Or maybe instead, he’ll have dinner with his own family or maybe just take a nap.
It also enables him to delegate the task of organizing and leading the meeting to someone else completely. Thus, freeing him up to love people. Plus, watching a video is an easy onramp for people to engage with your church. Perhaps even prospective members can watch the video at home? That leads to my next thought:
#2 – Video Meetings
Remember what it’s like in the middle of January? It’s cold, gets dark at like 2 pm (or at least it feels like that here in Pennsylvania), and no one really wants to leave their house with seven inches of snow on the ground. Except for the fact that there’s a pesky monthly leadership meeting that you have to attend. You have to bundle up go out in the cold.
Before you groan yourself, remember that your pastor has to prepare for the meeting, make sure there’s childcare, make sure someone is there to run the projectors, and audio and make sure someone is bringing the snacks. Rinse and repeat every month, or every week sometimes.
What if from his couch he could pull out his laptop and record the content instead and email it to the attendees? If you are really adventurous, he could hold a webinar with a chat room to make it more interactive. That also means the sound guy, the projector gal, the children’s workers all get to stay home and snuggle up too. That just turned a whole evening blocked out on his calendar into 90 minutes in his slippers. He might even get home in time to eat dinner beforehand. Not bad. You can do this for any meeting, too. Just use a webinar hosting platform of your choosing.
#3 – Video Website Welcome
Have you ever had to answer the same question over and over and over? I have four kids so I know the feeling well. But imagine your pastor. Answering the phone in the church office, answering emails and talking before church…questions and more questions about the church. Now imagine if you could have a dynamic video on your church homepage (or better yet, your social media sites), that explains the basics of your church.
Whether simple or more involved, a welcome video is a great way to visually introduce people to your church before they ever step through the door. Show your worship service, show how happy your children’s ministry workers are and the kids in your congregation (if you have parent’s permission). Show what the building looks like, where the entrance is, where you park. It’s basically a fun way to answer the frequently asked questions that may arise when someone visits your website and decides to call the church office and ask. Chances are they will still call in, but if your pastor’s phone (or church secretary if you have one) can ring a little less, that sermon might be more enjoyable this Sunday.
#4 – Video Updates
The best way to get to know someone is to spend time with them. But with tens, hundreds or possibly thousands of attendees at your church, it’s impossible for everyone to get the quality time they want with your pastor. So why not film some periodic updates?
If your pastor is very systematic, he may like to do a little devotional each week. Otherwise, why not post something to your YouTube channel or Facebook page every month. The more people can see his face and get to know him, the more they will fall in love with him or her and your church. Not long ago, leadership expert John Maxwell did a daily video called “A Minute with Maxwell.” He would take a word and talk about it in relation to leadership for a minute on video. He released one video every day. But he didn’t film one every day. Maxwell filmed several at a time and “dripped” them over time.
Imagine getting together with your pastor and filming four quick devotional videos. Then releasing them once a week. An hour of work gets you four weeks of content. Not only will people get to know your pastor, but it could help increase your church’s visibility in a web search when these videos are used on the church website, Facebook, Twitter, and perhaps other social networks.
#5 – Video Explaining
You pastor spends his entire life explaining things to people. Hopefully, most of his time is used explaining the Gospel through teaching and preaching. But much of his time can be explaining policies, new ideas, or even procedures.
What if instead of him trying to explain things over and over, he could delegate you to produce a tutorial? Imagine if your church is going through a change in how to check kids in for kids ministry. Don’t ask your pastor to get up and show everyone. Why not walk it through on video so people can watch it as many times as needed to get the idea?Through video, you can even share your computer screen for showing websites or presentations using an app like Screencast-o-matic to make a video like this one. The possibilities are endless and the time saved is incredible.
6 – Video Sermon Intro or Transition
Transitioning from one moment in your service to another can sometimes feel like racing around hairpin turns. It’s not always smooth and sometimes people can fall off the back of the truck. Imagine being the one driving the truck? A great sermon introduction video can help set the stage for your pastor to hit the ground running when it comes time to preach. Creating a video that explains the current sermon series and invokes an emotion in the audience can go a long way. Check out this video that introduces a sermon series about generations.
7 – Video Announcements
Do your pastor a favor and start creating church announcement videos. There’s no reason to have him get up and read announcements or even worse, a monotone elder who talks for hours. Being quick, to the point and fun can create positive energy around your events and engage your attendees. Plus, your pastor can focus on being prepared to preach and not trying to read sister Suzie’s handwriting for the knitting group announcement. It’s a great opportunity to create some fun commercials for your ministries or have an enthusiastic church member act as a newscaster.
There are many more ways to use video in your church. But helping your pastor by creating content that engages, informs and saves him valuable time will be a great chance for you to stretch your creative muscles and wonderful for him to delegate so he can focus on his primary role of pastoring the flock.