Worship Service Planning 101 – How We Did It June 5, 2019

by Bobby Gilles

in Church Communications

A church campus, built in 1915 as an elementary school, rests at the corner of Silver and Ekin. Nearby, a dog brays at a passing car. Light through yonder window breaks. It is morning in Anytown, USA. A church creative team prepares for the coming Sunday’s worship service. They’re going to launch a new sermon series on the book of Esther called Steady: Standing Strong In A World Of Chaos.

The preacher for this coming week, Travis McGowan, is not able to attend the meeting. The liturgy, normally written by Worship Director Justin Shaffer, will be penned this week by Jeremy Quillo and Justin Carey. Neither of them can attend the meeting, either. To see or read how all this panned out, click on our weekly liturgy recap Christianity 101 – How One Church Worshiped June 9, 2019.

This Week’s Players (in alphabetical order)

  • Lindsey Blair – Women’s Director
  • Bobby Gilles – Associate Pastor
  • Stephen Pierce – Family Pastor
  • Jonah Sage – Lead Pastor
  • Justin Sage – Worship Director

Assoc Pastor – So … how do we do this without the preacher? Or the liturgy writers?

Lead Pastor —  I think I have a zit on my elbow. Squeezes it, stuff comes out. Let’s pray.

Family Pastor — For the zit?

Lead Pastor — Let’s pray.

Lead Pastor leads group in prayer for their meeting, for Travis as he prepares to preach, and for Jeremy and Justin Carey as they write liturgy.

Worship Director – Jeremy was going to come but couldn’t make it. But did you know that if we sped up time by just a few milliseconds, we wouldn’t need Leap Year?

Assoc Pastor – Maybe we should dive into the logistics of interviewing the Saunders family. Stephen, can you catch everyone up to speed with what we’re doing?

Family Pastor — As you know, the Saunders are faithful members who have been serving as a family in Sojourn Kids (children’s ministry) for years. We wanted to bring them on stage to interview them. We want to honor their faithfulness and inspire others to begin serving as individuals or with their whole families.

Assoc Pastor — It’s a lot to ask Travis, as a non-staff pastor who already has to prepare a sermon while working his job.

Worship Director — Would you want to do the interview, Stephen?

Family Pastor – I’m the kids guy. Everyone knows I want volunteers. Could Jonah (Lead Pastor) do this, to give a little more pull?


Lead Pastor – Okay. If I have to.

Women’s Director – I can see why Jonah hesitates but there’s an element of struggle with getting kids volunteers. You aren’t the one who is usually calling people to serve in kids, so it might have more of an effect if you do it this time.

Lead Pastor – The part that gives me hesitation is that whoever preaches the most carries more weight, and I don’t think that’s healthy. It shouldn’t be that way.

Family Pastor – The time when you pitch for volunteers is not the time to change that reality.

Lead Pastor — That’s true. I’m fine doing it.

Assoc Pastor – When would we do it?

Family Pastor – After the Passing of the Peace? And we get Paula Saunders to do the scripture reading at the beginning of Travis’s sermon?


Assoc Pastor – Since it’s the start of the new series, we need to tell the congregation about the bonus study materials at the book table, and we need to promote the Cosper thing (a special Q&A luncheon at the end of the sermon series, featuring Mike Cosper, author of “Faith Among The Faithless: Learning from Esther how to Live in a World Gone Mad”).

Women’s Director – How about Jonah covers it, right after the Sojourn Kids interview. Then he segues into the Passing of the Peace.

Lead Pastor — Sure.

Worship Director — Can’t wait to hear Travis preach.

Women’s Director — His outline is so thorough.

Dissolves into discussion of shaving. No idea how or why.

See how all of this turned out here.

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