In recent months I have had the unfortunate opportunity to speak with churches that are between pastors. It is tough to watch them advance the Kingdom so slowly and cautiously. Many of their ministries freeze, including anything dealing with the web. If you are a church elder, or committee leader in your church; fret not. I will give you a few tips to keep advancing your online presence and continue to get people from clicking on your site to sitting in your seats.
- Do not change anything on your site about your faith. Aside from formatting the content and uploading it to the website, that is all pastor and no web team. I am sure the previous pastor prayed over the words long and hard; so do not meddle with anything until your new pastor arrives.
- Do not try to hide the fact that you are without a pastor, or have an interim pastor serving your church. Although you feel uncomfortable telling a newcomer that your church is in that situation; letting them find out on their own is worse. Be transparent to news and events, both good and bad, and you will be much better off.
- Keep updating your site with the latest news and events. Show that your ministries are alive and well, and the lack of spiritual leadership has not left your people without the Holy Spirit. Demonstrate that your church is the Body of Christ, not just one charismatic leader.
- Prepare some changes and updates for your website. Although you may want your new pastor to approve the changes, it should not stop you from figuring it out ahead of time. Document the changes and directions you wish to take. Create outlines and proposals for your committees. Upon consensus, have your web team create some mock-ups or prototypes.
- Start engaging in social media. Stake your claim in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and the many other outlets. If your previous pastor was not involved with social media, create the accounts, hand them to your new pastor, and train them. If you make it sound like this is what has always been done, they should gladly accept the responsibility of being a public voice for the church.
If you are one of the many churches out there that is struggling as you are between pastors; first seek comfort in prayer with the Lord. Ask for His guidance as you move forward on projects for your website. Follow my tips and prepare for a great season of harvest once your new pastor arrives. Lastly, if you have any tips of your own, please leave a comment for others to benefit from.
Photo courtesy of Vivek Chugh