Here are 10 service planning tips as you prepare for Easter Sunday.
When planning for your Easter Service, wrestle with a foundational question, “Why is Easter a big deal?” Go back to the basics of Easter’s magnitude. Don’t approach this as just another Sunday, for it is not. Dig deep! As worship leaders, we must devote ourselves not only to learning about worship but to learning about the One we worship. How can we lead people in profound worship of our holy God if we don’t know who He is and what He has done?
Prepare yourself as a worshiper and worship leader for the Easter season: re-read the four Gospels, watch the “Passion of the Christ” movie, take steps to personally return to the wonder and awe that the Easter season should inspire.
Pray, pray, pray! Seek the Savior, asking Him what your Easter service should look like.
Set a meeting time to talk with your Senior/Lead Pastor to get a sense of their goals, values, and hopes for the services? What will be the angle or focus of their message? How do they want it to feel at the end of their message? Celebrative? Meditative? Will there be response times such as an altar call, baptisms, certain types of prayer team responses? In addition, don’t just plan for Easter Sunday, but also consider Good Friday and Palm Sunday the week before. How do you want to approach those gatherings?
Are there any readings or traditional/liturgical elements that you would want to share on Easter?
Do you want to use any media elements/videos, drama pieces, testimonies live or pre-recorded?
If you want to introduce a new Easter song, consider introducing it a few weeks earlier, so the church is familiar and ready to sing it with passion on Easter.
What type of musical team do you want to use? Same as any other Sunday? Ramped up from usual, ramped down from usual?
With the COVID pandemic still going, how do you approach Easter if your church is not meeting in person? And if you are meeting in person but still have many of your congregation watching online, how do you engage those watching online in a special way for Easter?
Hospitality and worship leading. It is critical that as guests arrive and settle in at your church, they have a positive experience. Try sharing a goal of worship leading, “helping people focus on and give glory to the Lord” with all of your related weekend worship service ministries. All of your ministry teams, greeters, ushers, children’s workers, etc., have an opportunity to leave impressions on guests that sets them up to give glory to God or that hinders them. Keep in mind; many people come at Easter that don’t come any other time of the year. Stats say they decide if they will return in the first 10 minutes, often before a song or teaching is heard. Don’t waste this opportunity.
Read 25 Vocal Maintenance Tips by Sandra McKinney.
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Michael Bahn is the Executive Pastor of Creative Arts & Administration at River Valley Church in Grants Pass, OR. As a worship artist and songwriter, he records and releases his music, actively teaches on worship leadership and songwriting through conferences and seminars worldwide, and also serves as faculty teaching on Worship Leadership for Pacific Bible College in Medford, OR.