Willow Creek is an egalitarian non-denominational, multi-site church in and across Chicagoland passionate about helping people take next steps to love God, love people, and change the world. Founded in 1975 and birthed from a youth group, they went door-to-door asking one important question: Why don't you go to church? The responses fueled an innovative ministry that incorporated drums, dramas, and electric guitars years before they were common. Our church is a place where you can make a significant impact for God's kingdom based on how He has uniquely designed you, leading the people around you to become more like Jesus and showing the tangible love of Jesus both locally and globally. In addition to working with a local campus team, you will partner with other campuses throughout Chicagoland to pursue our mission to love God, love people and change the world.
Willow’s Wheaton campus launched in 2001 and grew into a multicultural community where people of all ethnic backgrounds, faith traditions, and life circumstances come together to experience and contribute to God’s work. Small groups and serving teams provide places where people can explore what it means to follow Jesus, then practically live it out in their families, workplaces, neighborhoods, and across the world.
Willow Wheaton services are held at Wheaton Academy and offices are located in downtown Wheaton. Average attendance is 350 in person and about 200 online. Willow Creek has six other campuses, and together they average 9,000 in person and about 12,000 online.
As part of Willow’s multi-site model, the Willow Wheaton staff, congregation, and partners have the opportunity to shape the overall ministry direction of Willow, while gaining the resources and support from centralized staff teams. As the Campus Pastor you will serve the staff and congregation by empowering and building teams through pastoral leadership and management of all functions of the campus (financial and ministry) and staff. You’re a pastor at heart and will use your high-capacity leadership to build teams and ensure the success of the local campus.
- Move campus attenders toward engagement.
- Lead campus staff meetings and one-on-ones with your team.
- Challenge, encourage and support staff, assist with problem-solving, develop talents, and engage with family members of campus staff to create a strong team dynamic and healthy culture.
- Be the campus advocate for the needs of your campus at the Executive Team level.
- Practice high emotional intelligence to connect with attendees during weekend services and move them towards increased engagement with our church family and our mission.
- Serve as the Chief Connector to help people move down the engagement pathway from crowd to connected to core.
- Provide pastoral care (personally, or through systems and leaders) for such as weddings, baby dedications, funerals, crisis care, etc.
- Develop a cadence of connection and prayer with the broader congregation.
- Develop relationships with key volunteer leaders and top donors in your congregation.
- Nurture and effectively cast vision to the local congregation in a way that inspires action and moves the mission forward.
- Serve as the primary host/facilitator for weekend services at your campus.
- Preach approximately once a month. (This can be shared with others on your team). These weekends will be synchronized with all campuses around a “big idea” topic.
- Teach for campus-specific meetings such as Bible studies, classes, leadership training, etc.
- Approve campus expenses and insure the campus operates within its budget.
- Help cast vision for Willow-wide financial initiatives (i.e. Celebration of Hope, vision campaigns, year-end fund)
- Collaborate Willow’s generosity team to help campus donors take steps in their generosity journey.
Keep a Willow-wide Focus
- Meet weekly with the Executive Team (includes Senior Pastor, Executive Pastors, Campus Pastors, Core Ministry Directors) to collaboratively set direction and make decisions for all of Willow.
- Rally your staff team to participate fully in scheduled all-church staff meetings and training.
- Enthusiastically champion and cheer for all-in church-wide efforts.
- Work in cooperation with Core Ministry Directors to execute and improve every ministry area.
- Establish strong channels of communication with all Willow leadership and peers, serving as the primary advocate between your campus and Willow Creek Core Team.
- Be a champion and supporter of the vision for multiplication of campuses.
- Lead your congregation by authentically supporting the strength of being one church in multiple locations, casting vision for the kingdom impact that is possible because of our connection.
- In cooperation with the Executive Pastor of Campuses, seek secondary responsibilities that are church-wide in nature (not campus specific), that fit a specific passion area for you, and that help move the entire church forward.
- Be a presence in the community surrounding your campus, nurturing relationships with local leaders from the village or city, school district, first responders, and others, as a way to gauge where Willow can bring the tangible love of Jesus to the community.
- Ensure a spirit of “bridge building” and cooperation exists relative to other local churches, organizations, and civic leaders.
Vision and Strategy
- Develop a strategic review process to understand where the campus needs to get vs where they are currently, and develop a vision and strategy for how to get there -- to bring alignment to the overall vision of Willow Creek.
- Enthusiastically support and be accountable for all growth metrics as they are developed, including attendance, giving, Welcome to Willow, small groups participation, Rooted, baptisms, volunteer engagement, Compassion and Justice engagement and impact, and more.
- Regularly evaluate every ministry for effectiveness and make the sometimes difficult decision to end or de-fund a program that is no longer accomplishing the mission and/or is out of alignment with our overall Willow mission, vision and strategy.
- Teach on the weekends approximately once a month at your campus.
- Serve on the Teaching Team with the Senior Pastor and other Campus Pastors to shape sermon series and develop content.
- Provide other teaching content as needed for classes, midweek events, training, etc
Whatever It Takes -- in addition to other responsibilities, campus pastors have a heart that is team and one-church focused, and gladly jumps in where needed above his or her regular responsibilities.
Success is defined by…
- Making Disciples - people are meeting Jesus, getting baptized, and growing in their faith.
- Passionate Alignment -- there is excitement at the campus about the vision of Willow Creek.
- Growing Intentionally -- every year, more people are attending, meeting Christ, taking steps, and participating than were in the previous year.
- Financial Health -- the campus is financially healthy and able to live within its means after contributing to Core Ministries, Core Services, and campus multiplication.
- Volunteer Development -- the ministry is led by capable, trained and aligned volunteers.
- Collaborative Creativity -- the campus becomes a breeding ground for creativity and innovation, and the initiatives that flourish are shared church-wide.
Note: Each campus is led by a Campus Pastor, but he/she is not alone in achieving success at that campus. The Core Ministry Directors, Executive Team, and entire staff of Willow will be working toward supporting the success of each campus.
Preferred Skills and Experience
- Catalytic Leader -- able to rally people to a cause
- Ministry Builder - constantly builds ministries through others that grow and multiply
- Momentum Driver - drives momentum across the campus and in key areas for what’s most important in each season.
- Motivator -- inspires others whether around a table or standing in front of the entire campus.
- Team Building -- can build teams and identify high capacity leaders to build more teams.
- Developer -- proven track record of developing and supporting leaders.
- Relational -- friendly and approachable with excellent interpersonal skills
- Talent Scout -- always on the lookout for new leaders and volunteers
- Total Quality Manager -- looking for ways to improve; sensitive to misses; committed to excellence.
- Communicator -- The primary host, greeter, and vision-caster of this congregation.
- Cheerleader -- encouraging and supporting volunteers and staff constantly.
- Carrier of the DNA -- they bleed the mission, vision and values of Willow.
- Solution Specialist -- able to identify problems and find solutions.
- Staff Champion -- cares for the spiritual, emotional, and familial health of the campus staff.
- Pastor -- has a heart to identify leaders and build systems to care for the congregation.
- Reproducer -- advocate for multiplication of leaders, disciples, followers of Jesus, teams and campuses.
- Learner -- can take direction and feedback and has a great desire to learn.
- Aligned -- knows Willow, loves Willow, has bought-in to the method, philosophy, and direction of our “one church in multiple locations” model.
- Leader at Home -- no concerning spiritual or emotional health issues within his or her family.
- Time Manager -- does not require external systems to prioritize; is intrinsically motivated.
- Person of Integrity -- they are a leader worth following in habits, disciplines, and personal decisions.
- Self-Aware -- knows where they have weakness, and finds others to fill in those gaps.
- Passionate follower of Jesus -- fully devoted to following Jesus in everything they do
- Embraces Challenge - Always learning, growing and evaluating
- Committed to Candor - Willing to give and receive feedback through healthy, courageous conversations.
- Believes the Best - Takes responsibility for weaknesses and failures and seeks to understand and resolve conflicts quickly.
- Sets the Tone - Chooses hope and looks for where God is moving in every circumstance, creating intentional fun and not taking yourself too seriously
- Chooses Unity - Believes we are better together and committed to building inclusive teams across racial, ethnic, cultural, gender and generational lines.
Education and Experience:
- Campus Pastors likely have an undergrad degree or higher. However, it is more important to us that this individual is educated and continues to grow, whether that happens in a classroom setting or other.
- Likely served in a leadership position at a church or campus size of 1,500 or more.
- Has proven experience leading teams.
- Extensive leadership and management experience including planning, strategy, and vision casting
- Pastoral connections/care experience
You May be a fit if…
You don’t need to preach every week
You don’t want or need to be in the #1 seat of the entire organization and excel in working on a team
You are motivated and love to work hard
You don’t need to be the originator of the overall vision and enjoy working with your team to determine how the vision plays out locally
You can navigate complexity
You love people.
You get excited about helping people take their next step with God to love God, love people and change the world