Dealing With A Team Member who doesn’t attend church or services

Your Question:

“How do I deal with a CM team member who doesn’t attend an adult service, or who doesn’t attend this church?”

The Issues:

This is a very “political,” sensitive issue. The reason for requiring that those who serve in the CM (or any ministry in the church) is to guarantee that those serving are committed to that local church and that they are in touch with what is going on there.  Some people serve at one church and attend another church.  For whatever reason, this dual church life may not be the best for the CM. It is easier to enforce this standard if there is a general policy from the church. Then, you only need to communicate that policy and to encourage the team member to attend this church’s services. If a team member cannot, or will not attend your church’s worship services, then you might be faced with a hard decision.

Scripture Foundation:

“Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.” 2Corinthians 13:11

Short Answer:

When faced with the realization that a CM team member doesn’t attend services at your church, you have two options: 1) Ignore it in light of the team member’s dedication, or 2) Consult your ministry supervisor or senior pastor to get advice on how to deal with it.  If you choose to ignore the situation, you need to be prepared to possibly deal with it later.  Other team members will discover it and the issue may spread into something that can affect the morale on the entire team.  You may also be asked about it by your ministry supervisor or senior pastor once they discover it.  It is always better to deal with issues right away than ignore them and hope they will go away.  In ministry leadership things don’t “go away” on their own; they increase and become more complex. If your church doesn’t have a clear policy requiring those who serve at the church to also attend services there, then you don’t need to deal with this issue.  It might be that your inquiry to the church leadership about this issue may lead to a uniform policy about all who serve at the church.  This isn’t a bad thing!  It is important to have unity among every ministry.  If the church does have a policy that states that all who serve at the church must also attend services at the church, then all you need to do is to communicate this policy to the team member who doesn’t attend services and ask him/her to tell you why he/she chooses to attend services elsewhere.  If you can encourage the team member to begin attending services there, and he/she agrees, you have solved the issue. If he/she tells you that the times of the services don’t work for his/her schedule (this might be the case if your church has only one Sunday morning service, and he/she serves in the CM at that time), you might have to be okay with this conflict.  If your church offers a midweek service, he/she could be strongly encouraged to attend that service.  With only one Sunday morning service, you may face this challenge with all your CM team members who serve on Sunday morning.  This is a great reason to establish a rotation schedule for your CM team.  With a rotation schedule, the team members will only serve for a defined period of weeks, and then be “off” from the team for the next period of weeks.  The team members can enjoy the adult worship services during their “off” periods. Click on the links below to learn more about this challenge, and how to create a rotation cycle in your children’s ministry.

Click here to read more about how to deal with human nature in the “image of God.”

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