Home > Blog > Campus Pastor Skill #1: How to Close a Service

January 21, 2017

Campus Pastor Skill #1: How to Close a Service

By Daniel Im

Campus pastors are not highly paid emcees or volunteer coordinators as I outlined in this previous article.

Campus pastors play a critical role in the life of a multisite church. They are the vision carriers for their campus, the equipper of the equippers, the pastor of that community, and the unifying ligament to the other campuses and the broader church.

Typically, campus pastors don’t preach, unless they are also a part of the teaching team. As a result, the preaching either comes via video from the main campus, or the teaching team will prepare the sermon together and each preach it live at their respective campuses.

I’ve been a teaching pastor in both models, and they each have their respective positives and negatives. In any case, in both models, someone needs to close out the service. And my conviction is that it needs to be the campus pastor. This is one of the primary public ways that the campus pastor can shepherd their campus. Yes, obviously this will happen through leadership development environments, coffee, and ministry done together, but as a regular and ongoing rhythm, the campus pastor needs to close out the service.

I’ve seen campus pastors do this well and I’ve also seen them do it poorly. Check out this chart I developed.

This may seem pretty straightforward, but you’d be surprised at how difficult it is to stick to the positive ways to close out a service.

I know this because I’ve often done the latter when serving as a campus pastor—especially when I forgot to share an announcement earlier in the service, or needed to reemphasize a programming issue.

As a campus pastor, if you have closed out the service well by contextualizing the message to your campus, then leave any last announcement to the very end of the service, after your prayer! This is because once you finish praying, you often have the opportunity to share one more thing while people are beginning to leave. Don’t make this too long, otherwise, the positive impact of your closing will wane.

An Example…

I’m blessed to serve as a Teaching Pastor at The Fellowship, alongside two great campus pastors: Len Taylor and Scott Matthews. While being different in personality, leadership style, and demeanor, I’m so encouraged to tag team in ministry with them. There is no one perfect way to close out a service because every campus pastor needs to be true to their unique personality and leadership style. There is, however, a wrong way to close out a service—and that’s to just copy someone else and try to be someone you aren’t.

Earlier this year, I preached a message on prayer at the Two Rivers Campus of my church. Check out this video of Scott Matthews, the campus pastor, closing out this service by:

  • Shepherding the church
  • Sharing how it impacted him
  • Reiterating some important points
  • Celebrating ministry wins and creating a sense momentum
  • And offering next steps

Join me next time as I share Campus Pastor Skill #2: How to Lead Across.

Do you have what it takes to be a campus pastor? How does this role differ from a church planter? Or from a senior pastor? Learn from our research-based and practitioner-tested scope and sequence to develop campus pastors in our course, Essential Campus Pastoring.


Daniel Im

Daniel Im (@danielsangi) is the Director of Church Multiplication for NewChurches.com at LifeWay Christian Resources. He is a Teaching Pastor at The Fellowship, a multisite church in Nashville. He is the author of No Silver Bullets: Five Small Shifts that will Transform Your Ministry, and co-author of Planting Missional Churches: Your Guide to Starting Churches that Multiply (2nd ed) with Ed Stetzer. He also co-hosts the New Churches Q&A Podcast, the 5 Leadership Questions Podcast, and a brand new podcast with his wife on marriage and parenting called the IMbetween Podcast. He has an M.A. in Global Leadership and has served and pastored in church plants and multisite churches ranging from 100 people to 50,000 people in Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal, Korea, Edmonton, and Nashville. Visit Danielim.com to learn more.


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