Without a pastor involved you have zero chance of success in any capital campaign. One of the biggest hurdles I have in helping churches raise funds is often the one person who should want the campaign to be successful, the Senior Pastor. Pastoral involvement is key if not THE key to a campaign being successful. A few years ago I wrote this…
Why the pastor is so important
The pastor sets the tone for the entire church. It’s called leadership. If you do not have a leader you will not raise funds. Plain and simple.
God gives the pastor the vision for the church. Some might disagree with me but I firmly believe this is the biblical pattern. That does not mean the pastor is a dictator to the church. It does not mean the vision does not need input and refinement. It simply means that successful churches are those where the pastor has received the vision and communicated it down line to the rest of the church. Their buy in is essential but it always starts at the top.
Donors want to know if the program will be completed before they will commit to giving towards it. How can they be assured of that if the pastor is being rumored to be leaving or has left? At that point all bets are off. They will wait until the next pastor comes to see how things will play out. It is imperative that pastors communicate that their desire is to finish out what they believe God has initiated them to do. If donors feel the pastor is simply using them to climb up the ladder they will not support the vision.
Pastors are the key spokesperson for the campaign. I have lots of pastors who tell me they want to engage us so that they can continue to focus on ministry. I know what they are saying and it is true we can help administrate the flow of the campaign and we certainly can help in strategic planning. However no one can replace the shepherd in the minds of the people. There are simply some things that the pastor MUST do to make the campaign successful. If the vision really is burning in your heart you will find the time needed to communicate it.
What I wrote 2009 is still true today. Pastor, your campaign needs you! We can help you be more effective but we cannot do what only you can do.
Don’t fall prey to the should have’s. When campaigns are not as successful as pastors want them to be I often here them say…
“I should have started sooner.”
“I should have met with more people.”
“I should have done this or that.”
“I should have listened to you!” Yes, they actually tell me that! The problem is when you play the should have game it is too late. The time to do what needs to be done is BEFORE the commitment day not afterwards.
Mark this down, capital campaigns that are successful ALWAYS are led by a Senior Pastor that is engaged and fully involved from start to finish!
Pastor, no one can take your key role in a capital campaign so don’t mail in your part and think you can successfully raise funds. Don’t go it alone. The campaign that intimidates you fuels us! We know how to help make your next capital campaign a success. It starts with our pastoral coaching. Do you have a coach to help you through the process? Call us today!
Mark Brooks – The Stewardship Coach