Dan Reiland
Dan Reiland

Losing a staff member for any reason can be hard on you as a leader. It's a difficult process. After all, your church staff is in some ways like family!

Pastors often call and ask if they need to make an announcement on Sunday morning when a staff member leaves their church. Good question. In addition to the pressure that a leader carries to handle a staff transition well, how that decision is communicated and to whom really matters.

This article is not about the decision regarding a staff member leaving (and regardless of whether it was your decision or theirs). It's about how to handle the communication when the decision is made.

Before we jump in, let me ask you a question: Do you feel compelled to tell the congregation when a staff member leaves? If you do, why do you feel this way? Have you considered that it's not necessarily or automatically a good idea?

Some leaders push back and say it's because the church is family, and everyone should know. That's one perspective, and fair enough. Others get very candid and own a little insecurity that brings with it a need for the congregation to like them, which shapes who they tell and how. Some admit it's an authority issue and involves keeping control. It may be nothing like that for you. It may be no more complex than a tradition of communication.

Every church culture is different, but here are some guidelines to help you know how to handle these situations. You may agree or disagree with some of my thoughts, but in the end, if they help you gain clarity, it's good.

For a limited time, we are extending our celebration of our 40th anniversary. As a special offer, subscribe to Ministry Today magazine and receive 50% OFF our normal discounted rate!

What are you doing to actively reach new people? On Platform is a series of four one-day sessions held throughout the year that teaches you how to use platforms like blogging, social media, book publishing, podcasting and more to grow your audience. If you're serious about growing, Click Here.

Your Turn

Comment Guidelines
Use Desktop Layout
Ministry Today Magazine — Serving and empowering church leaders