What Are the Duties of a Head Usher in a Church?

by Antonio Newell

Ushers are an important part of a church organization. They perform tasks that help services flow at a certain pace, and help maintain order and safety within the congregation. However, the head usher's job description has many more responsibilities, and can be seen as being more technical.

Position Clarification

The head usher knows how certain equipment should operate, as well as the nuances of various church functions.

Though the head usher can perform some of the duties of a regular usher, the head usher's position is comparable to a managerial position in a store. The ushers are the clerks and the head usher is the manager, so to speak. The head usher has knowledge of the technical application of the church's audio equipment, as well as entrance accessibility to the building.

Prior Service Duties

The head usher gets all other ushers in accord before service.

The head usher should arrive at the church 30 to 45 minutes prior to a service to make sure all things are in order. All appropriate entrances should be unlocked, and all security entrances should be posted. Any non-entrance doors should be checked to make sure they are inaccessible. Check the bulletins and inform other ushers of any changes. The head usher should unite all the ushers, possibly through having a prayer session before the first service. All in-service materials should be checked. All accompanying lights in the facility should be turned on. All other electrical and electronic equipment, such as microphones, amplifiers, alarms, and heating or air conditioning units, should be turned on. Collection plates should be put in the appropriate places. The head usher should assign subordinate ushers to entrance doors throughout the auditorium and all entrances.

In-Service Duties

During the service, the head usher keeps all doors monitored.

The head usher should greet any latecomers at the entrance and guide them to a designated section to wait until the next available seating time. If there are any first-time visitors, they should be made acquainted with basic information about the church and be given special attention. However, there be no disruptions or distractions during the service. The head usher also supervises the other ushers, ensuring they are performing their duties well. Before the offering, the head usher should direct the other ushers to their respective locations before it starts, but only at the right time. The head usher and another usher take the offerings to the appropriate place within the church.

After-Service Duties

The head usher oversees cleanup.

The head usher ensures a headcount has been taken of everyone at the service. After the headcount has been verified, the head usher should delegate cleanup tasks. After the cleanup, the collection plates should be returned to the proper location. Security checks should be made to the doors around the building after all the church members have exited. All windows and doors should, then, be locked. After the rounds have been made, the head usher can begin shutting off all the electrical equipment (lights, fixtures, heat and air conditioning units, microphones). If there are any problems, she should report them to the church's main office. Verifying all lights and equipment are off, the head usher exits the building, locking the door to the facility.

About the Author

Antonio Newell has been a writer since 2006 and has ghostwritten for several people. His specialties are musical and self-help and he has written for Tony Tee Music since 2008 as the content manager. Newell attended Mississippi Valley State University, receiving a Bachelor of Arts in audio engineering with a musical performance minor.

Photo Credits

  • baptist church image by Tracy Martinez from Fotolia.com