An Open Letter to My Fellow Worship Leaders


As I write this, I prepare to face our first day of ‘stay-at-home’ orders for the state of Tennessee due to the spread of COVID-19. Our orders are in effect until April 14th—just a couple days after Easter.

My primary job as a worship leader is to engage the congregation and community in music and worship, especially on Easter Sunday. All the special music I intended to lead for the congregation won’t happen anymore. All the incredible moments I had planned since before Christmas are put on hold. In recent weeks, even the hope to prerecord an amazing online experience won’t happen anymore.

Worship leader, don’t forget that Easter is about telling your people about the hope in Jesus Christ who conquered death to give us eternal life. Your people need that message of hope right now.

This Easter…

  • Some of your church members will be completely separated from family members who are sick and quarantined.
  • Some of your congregation lost their job and don’t know when the next paycheck will come.
  • Some of your senior adults, who normally complain about the loud music, aren’t allowed to leave home and may not even know how to stream an online worship service.
  • Some of the people in your community who would have visited your church for Easter are now trying to figure out how to get thousands of hospital beds and ventilators by Easter.
  • Some of your families are overwhelmed trying to balance online school for the kids, work-from-home jobs and find a way to battle the depression welling up inside of them.
  • Some of your community, who would’ve attended your church Easter egg hunt, are now trying to figure out life with the loss of a loved one due to coronavirus.

Worship leader, you may not have your special music for Easter. You won’t get that epic social media Easter pic. Heck, you may not even be able to stream any music for your online Easter service.

But you still have a job to tell others about the hope of Jesus Christ in a world that is literally dying to hear any good news. Do not mourn the loss of your Easter set list. Proclaim the Good News you have for the world.

They are looking for something better than any songs you had planned; bigger than any cool effects you could’ve added to your services. They are looking for something more important than your fancy lights, haze machine, choir special, or exceptional music.

You have a big message of hope for your church and community.
Jesus has conquered death and overcome the world.
And they need to hear that more than anything else right now.

This Easter…

  • It’s okay to have low-quality video.
  • It’s okay if your online service isn’t going to be what you wanted it to be.
  • It’s okay to not have music at all if it isn’t possible.
  • It’s okay if there are seven other churches who have a cooler or better-quality streamed service than you.

Focus on what you can do, not what you can’t do.
Make sure you are ministering to people more than accomplishing tasks.

This Easter…

  • Teach your congregation how to sing and worship at home as a family.
  • Call those senior adults and check in with them.
  • Be okay with your Easter service being different than what you imagined.
  • Take care of your first responders and healthcare personnel in your community.
  • Share with everyone that God is bigger than COVID-19 and anything else coming our way in the weeks and months ahead.

Worship leader, they need hope.
You can lead that new song another time.
Your church will follow your lead.
Serve others and tell them about Jesus. He is the hope of the world.

Lead them in worship this way—it may be the best way you have led them yet.

A fellow worship leader