Responsibilities and Duties of a Church Usher

Interior of a church.
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As an usher, you are often the first person to see visitors and members as they arrive at the church. You may perform a variety of duties, depending on the individual rules and guidelines within your church. While some church ushers are responsible for church offerings, others are limited to greeting church members as they arrive. Whatever the level of responsibility, ushers serve as a representative of the church.

1 Greeting Worshipers

Church ushers direct traffic in the church. When visitors arrive, they tell them when they can enter the sanctuary to avoiding interrupting a service. Their most important job may be to keep track of available seats and guide attendees to them. This is an essential function when the church is full.

2 Promoting Fellowship

Ushers encourage fellowship among churchgoers, providing information about the church to visitors and extending an invitation to join. They may recommend ministries for members to join and introduce new members to established ones, promoting unity and fellowship within the congregation. Ushers also pass along prayer requests from congregation members to church leaders.

3 Collecting the Offering

In some congregations, ushers collect the money offerings. They may pass the collection plates throughout the congregation, or stand at the front of the church with the collection container until the offering is complete. After the service, they may count the money collected or serve as witnesses while someone else counts. As custodians of church money, honesty and integrity are important characteristics.

4 Maintaining Peace

Even churches need peacemakers sometimes. Ushers ensure that all visitors have an opportunity to hear and enjoy the sermon without distractions. They may ask a disruptive visitor to step outside of the sanctuary or direct a mother with a crying child to a special area for babies. Ushers observe the congregation for any potential problems. If the church is overheated, they turn on the air conditioner and pass out fans. They also stay alert for medical emergencies and act accordingly when they occur.

5 Preparing the Church

Ushers often prepare the church for services and special events, ensuring that ample bibles and hymnals are available for the congregation's use. For special events, ushers may rope off reserved seats or parking spaces. After services, ushers walk the pews to pick up trash. They also return bibles and hymnals to their proper locations.

Erika Winston is a Washington, D.C.-based writer, with more than 15 years of writing experience. Her articles have appeared in such magazines as Imara, Corporate Colors E-zine and Enterprise Virginia. She holds a Juris Doctor degree from Regent University and a Masters in public policy from New England College.