There are many positions in churches beyond the pastor or priest. Some examples are the administrative assistant, youth director, volunteer coordinator, director of Christian education, director of music, organist, accountant and custodian. These people have a sense of being called by God to serve the congregation. To ensure that the church runs smoothly, some churches create job descriptions for each paid position.
Church workers do their jobs as part of a team. Although everyone has unique responsibilities, no one is considered more important than other members of the team.
Churches with multiple staff members benefit from creating well-defined job descriptions. The job descriptions reduce misunderstandings about who should lead each ministry, especially when two programs overlap. One example is a youth choir, which might be lead by either the youth director or the director of music. Conversely, there may be a ministry with no staff liaison because no one considers it within their responsibilities.
Most pastors and priests have completed a master of divinity degree and been ordained in the church. Other positions require a bachelor’s or master’s degree in a field appropriate to the position in areas such as theology, youth and family ministry, education, music or business. Some positions may require only a high school diploma, such as receptionist, volunteer coordinator or custodian.
Churches expect workers to have a strong understanding of their theology and an active life of faith because they serve as role models. They interact with members of the church and the community, so they must have strong customer service and hospitality skills. Most positions organize volunteers within their ministry, so they must be strong leaders with excellent written and verbal communication skills.
The Occupation Information Network of the U.S. Department of Labor reports that directors of religious activities and education averaged $17.35 per hour and $36,100 per year in 2008. The same source reported that clergy averaged $20.06 per hour and $41,730 per year in 2008. The projected growth through 2018 for both clergy and directors of religious activities and education is expected to be between 7 and 13 percent, which is average. Separate statistics are not available for other positions, such as church receptionist, accountant or custodian.