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VLOG 003: Online Pastor Job Profile



Hey Jeff here with THECHURCH.DIGITAL. Remember, last time we were talking, we were talking about church online and basically how it needs to get together with the physical campus as we're moving out of this COVID season. We've been very heavy church online before COVID. We're very heavy physical. But the one lesson we need to take away from all this is that the digital and the physical, we need to work together. And I use the word a lot phygital P-H-Y-G-I-T-A-L of how to get our phygital church to work together. How physical and digital can work together. And really the biggest place that defines your church in this next COVID season is the philosophical structure. We talked about that last time of, of whether you want a church online whether you want to hire like that online pastor where he's just doing ministry to people who don't attend physically.

Do you want to do a digital model of church where you've got this one pastor who's basically doing ministry across the entire church? Or do you want to instead do something where it's more like a champion or a project manager? Everybody owns a piece of the puzzle. In those situations, it's not a single person who's doing the ministry. We all, all, everyone on the staff, even the volunteers all have a part in an online ministry. It's just a matter of championing that and helping them understand that and holding them accountable for the job. So it's really, it's three different jobs, but at the end of the day, what you're going to get from this is a different strategy kind of for each, because each, depending upon what your answer is for your church, the flavor of what the ministry actually looks like is going to be spun differently depending upon what your posture is on each of those three options, which is your church going to choose.

But moving on from that, we can look at just kind of what the base diagram for a church online pastor would be. Now it's going to taste different depending upon which of the three options you choose as stated before. But really you've got this, this idea of what a pastor should be and here are the five things that are going to be on that. On that job profile. First off, you're going to be developing some sort of content for online now. Pre-COVID, you know, we would say things like, you know, developing the weekend experience for online, but coming out of COVID, maybe your church isn't doing weekend services or, or maybe the experiences are moving beyond just that one hour on Sunday because we've learned something in this COVID season. We know that church is more than the one hour on Sunday because we have now felt that for the past two months as we've been able to gain ground in people's lives by engaging with them more than the one hour, but having that person champion or resource or be responsible for that, championing that and developing that.

For, for the church, that's going to be one of the areas that a, this online pastor, whatever the context that online pastor would, would resource. Now, second would also, I would say drive online discipleship. You know, maybe in the season your church moved online, small groups from the physical to online very effectively, somewhat effectively, nominally, effectively. Or maybe you didn't even give it a shot or it, it just, it didn't work. I mean, anything can happen in the season, but there's still a valid opportunity to do ministry to, to discipleship in this space. Because if all we're doing is content, but we're not doing anything on the discipleship side, well then we're just creating consumers. And that consumerism actually has nothing to do with in the church. So if we're going to call it a church online, and if we ourselves are a church and wanting to merge this physical and digital together, we've got to figure out what the discipleship component looks like, whether it's small group Bible study component, maybe it's another thing that you're doing on top of that.

But there's a challenge for this online pastor to figure out how to take your church's infrastructure, how to do it digitally, and maybe even how to improve it in the digital space. That's, that's number two on the list. Number three, champion online locations, online gatherings. Now, this may be a little futuristic idea. We've talked about it a lot recently here on the podcast. Greg Aukerman from crossroads church. We want to see physical come out of church online. The gospel that we learned in our online world has to affect our offline relationships. We learned that from online offline theory. Thank you very much, Jay Kranda. But what we know from this is that we can see the gospel, we can see our church onlines. If we're really effective in discipling, then we're going to want to see new creations. We're gonna want to see new communities grown out of this.

And this may be an aggressive theory and some of you are thinking, yeah, we're not there yet. But if you start to champion it now, if you use this season to create micro locations, all of a sudden you may see a priesthood of believers built up in your church that maybe will reach a whole other sector of people that you've never been able to reach because you're utilizing different ways from it. Maybe the lesson in this COVID season for you is, is more of enabling and mobilizing others to be the church instead of gathering, once again back in the physical buildings for church. All right. Number four, as we're going through this, a liaison to physical church pastors, here's the deal. Even even in this giant eight week bootcamp of COVID, we church our physical churches and we're struggling to learn church online. Effectively.

We've been doing it under the gun, but when we go back to our offices, when we go back to the buildings we're, we're going to revert back to the way that it used to be. Actually, I had had somebody tell me once, Jeff, you need to always remind people of where they're going or else they'll revert back to the way they were. And so for us, church, for you, church, for the online pastors that, that you're hiring, I would challenge you to challenge them. Like don't go back to the way that it was. It's going to be very easy to slip back into the comfort zone. And in this COVID, in this post-COVID season, if we really want to be aggressive, if we really want to see change happen, if we really want to get to this phygital model that marries physical and digital, we can't go back to the way that it was.

We have to move forward in that and so you online pastor yet to be hired newly hired. Don't let people revert back. Challenge them. Tell stories, cast vision like you've never been before because people are moldable now like they've never been before. Number five on the list here is research and development. There is always going to be new tech. There's always going to be a new platform. There's always going to be a new toy. There's always going to be something on this list. Now it's very easy to put on the tech hat, the play with the new toys in the new gadgets and forget the relational context of what you're trying to achieve with church online. So never forget that relational piece, but realize for every new social media platform, there's now a new community that we church. If we really want to be effective in doing ministry online, we need to figure out how to reach those digital communities for the digital communities they are.

Historically within the church, we've looked at digital communities as a way to connect with our regular attending members to encourage them to come to the building. Historically, we've never really been able to look at these digital communities and realize that they are a community to be reached in itself. I don't want to utilize YouTube to reach people that are already attending my building. You want to utilize YouTube as a way to reach people that are connecting on YouTube, you know, as as a digital church and creating that movement. What if we reached YouTube people where they were in their community and figured out how to disciple them as a community virtually anywhere. It's a completely different mindset and one that I don't think we as a church have really wrestled with. What does it mean to really disciple people in the digital community that they are instead of driving them to our physical community to do discipleship.

So even as a church, wrestle with that at number five, how do you define digital community and context of discipleship? That principle, once you figure it out, truly defines a lot of what the others here are gonna be. So to go over the five again you're going to represent, you are going to champion content, you are going to drive online discipleship. You're going to champion online locations gathering together. You're going to be a liaison for physical pastors, constantly challenging them and helping them to break out of this physical only mindset. And then number five, research and development. Always finding the new tools, the new methods, the new communities to do ministry with. Those are your five job profiles to do church online. Online pastor recently hired yet to be hired. That's what you're looking for. That's what you want to do to effectively reach community in this post COVID environment mid-COVID, post-COVID environment that we're currently in. Well, thanks for listening. This is Jeff with THECHURCH.DIGITAL. Hit me up if you've got questions, comments, where wherever platform you're watching this on, hit me up on social media, deerffej, and be sure to subscribe to us over on the YouTube channel. Thanks everybody. Bye.

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About Author

Jeff Reed
Jeff Reed

With about 20 years experience serving the church in the digital/technological realm, Jeff loves working with churches. As passionate about Discipleship as he is Technology, Jeff uses his passion to help Churches develop technology systems to bring people far from God closer to him. Oh, and he loves Digital Church & Church Online.

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