How to Start a Worship Team

You’ve planted your first church and all is well except for one thing, you don’t have a worship team. Your spouse can’t play an instrument and you can’t sing. Often when churches are new, and even in the life of an established ministry, there are times when you don’t have anyone to lead worship.

Quite a few years ago my husband and I were pastoring a church that had an excellent piano player. A year or so later the young man left for college. Since we didn’t have anyone to take his place, I had to learn how to play a few worship choruses very quickly. Not the best option, but it was the only alternative we had.

Tips to help you start a new worship team:

  1. Learn how to play an instrument. If you have even a small amount of musical ability, piano courses that teach how to play by ear are easier than learning sheet music.

    If piano isn’t your thing, simple guitar courses and free guitar tabs are the quickest way to learn.

  2. Use worship tracks and recording software. If you shudder at the thought of learning to play an instrument, another option is to use praise and worship split tracks or music recording software programs.

    Split tracks allow you to mute the vocals and sing along with the instruments. Some companies sell worship DVDs which include songs, lyrics and visuals to use with projection software.

    Music recording programs allow you to use MIDI and recorded audio to create custom worship sets. These options are great when you have vocalists but no musicians.

  3. Recruit worship leaders, singers and musicians. Most established churches have a few musicians or vocalists hiding in the congregation. However, being able to play an instrument or sing is only a small part of this important ministry. Worship leaders and team members must be anointed by God.

    Another way to find worship team members is to post flyers in local music stores, business and libraries. Also, online newspapers, community centers, schools, etc. usually allow churches and non-profit groups to post free ads and announcements for their particular area.

  4. Sing worship songs without instruments. One enthusiastic person leading the congregation in a cappella worship can be very powerful. Don’t feel pressured to have a full worship team from the start. Let God bring your ministry together in His time and it will be a beautiful thing.