I’ve served as a worship leader and pas- tor in 10 different churches over the past 38 years. The churches I’ve worked in range from 10 to 5,000 people. I’ve worked with pastors of a wide variety
of ages, personalities and leadership styles.
I’ve had distant relationships with most
and a closer friendship with only a few.
What makes a co-working relationship
between pastor and worship leader a lasting, fruitful and enjoyable experience?
Trust and respect
The trust factor is huge. If I trust my pas-
tors, then I can follow them and “hold
them in the highest regard in love because
of their work” (1 Thessalonians 5: 13). The
Christlike qualities I look for in a pastor are
generosity, freedom from selfish ambition
and a servant’s heart. When I see pastors
exercising spiritual authority for the benefit
of those they lead, I know I can trust them.
A healthy co-working relationship is
built on mutual trust. And trust is built by
demonstrating a servant heart. To earn
the trust of a pastor, I need to consistently
and joyfully serve my team members, the
leadership team and the entire congrega-
tion. My job as a servant-leader is to make
worship easier for the entire local church
family. That often means making sacrifi-
cial choices (in song selection, length of
worship time, giving up my time on the
platform to make space for someone else).
When pastors see me doing these
things, they can trust me because they see
that I really am working for the benefit of
everyone. If I sense a pastor doesn’t trust
me, I don’t feel the freedom to be creative
and expressive in my worship – two es-
sential parts of worship leading. Life in
the church is generally unhappy without
In 1979 I had my first experience as a Sunday worship leader. I was disappointed by
the lack of relationship I had with the senior
pastor. I was not only a primary worship
leader, but also an intern pastor. I had almost no contact with the senior pastor. I was
hoping he would be a friend and mentor to
me. But he had hundreds of other people to
attend to, and dozens of other leaders.
Since then, I’ve learned not to have
unrealistic expectations of the role a pastor will play in my life. If you look up to
a pastor and have an aching need to be
guided and parented, you may find yourself craving attention from them and being
The relationship between senior pastors and worship leaders can be
fraught with peril – or really wonderful. Worship leader Andy Park
guides us closer to wonderful. By Andy Park
How Can Worship Leaders
Work in unity With Pastors?
PHo To: WWW.DEsIGnPICs.CoM