A sample church resignation letter (6 examples)

In this guide, we will discuss a sample church resignation letter format or letter templates and a few tips on what should be included in your church resignation letter.

Church Resignation Letter

A Church Resignation Letter refers to a formal written notice that lets the receiver know of the sender’s intention to leave a position with a religious organization. A church resignation letter is similar to a general resignation letter in terms of the content, mostly, but it is addressed to a pastor or other church leader.

A sample church resignation letter

A sample church resignation letter should include, like any resignation announcement from a church pastor, ministry, choir director, church treasurer, church secretary, etc., the following:

  • Clearly state your intention for leaving.
  • Briefly describe the reason for your departure and the intended date of departure.
  • Plans for the transition period.
  • Thank them.
  • Include a closing and sign it.

How to resign from my church?

If you want to resign from your church because you are going to help in another church, you are going to move to a different city or you would like to go into a different career path in life then we advise you to follow these steps:

  • Set up a meeting with your pastor, either in person or by email. Here you can let your pastor know a bit more about the details why you are leaving.
  • Bring your letter with you to the meeting and go over the plans for leaving. It could be a very special and emotional moment for you but remember to discuss important details such as key dates.
  • If you have received any items (or anything) from the church, make sure you return everything before leaving.
  • Hand in your formal resignation letter. You could use one of the following free samples and don’t forget to sign it.

How to resign from a church position?

To resign from a church position, you can do the following things:

  • Talk to the pastor face to face.
  • Tell them about the reasons for resigning
  • Return anything you may have received from the church. 
  • Give in your formal resignation letter

Sample 1

“April 9, 2017

Stuart Tabac

Resurrection Catholic Church

1251 New Avenue

Townville, CA 90121

(123) 123-5555

Dear Father Tabac,

It is with my most sincere regret that I will be stepping down from my position as Worship Leader of Resurrection Catholic Church. This was an unexpected decision which was brought up by the fact that my health has been in question ever since my back surgery last year. Therefore, I will be resigning as of March 1, 2017.

As you know, my back pain has become an issue over the last few months and even more so within the past two weeks. While I wish the pain were such that I could continue serving as head of the worship team in an effective manner, however, I feel that it would be best if I took my leave and focused on recovering.

It has been a great experience learning from yourself and the other members of the Church. I have not only become a better leader, but I’ve also grown as a follower of Christ. Thank you for your mentorship throughout this entire process.

Please let me know if there is anything that can be done on my part to find a suitable replacement. I will always be willing to lend a hand whenever possible.

Forever in Christ,

George Smith”

Example from eforms.com.

[convertkit form=1501442]

Sample 2

“May 22, 2017

John M. Smith

The Mission Church

77 Parkway Ave.

Phoenix, AZ 85003

(321) 321-5555

Dear Pastor Smith,

Unfortunately, I am writing this letter to present my official resignation as leader of the Foreign Missions Team, effective two weeks from today (June 5, 2017). I have had such an amazing experience serving under your mentorship and instilling the love of Christ into the hearts of hundreds. However, my time with The Mission Church must come to a close.

I have been presented with an opportunity to lead a small group of missionaries in Portugal where, as you know, the presence of God has become less and less prevalent. I have prayed over this decision and I truly believe that this is what God wants me to do.

Your guidance over these past few years has been nothing but a positive impact on my life and on those close to me. I only wish to continue teaching others as you have taught me. Thank you for everything and give my love to your family and the entire congregation.

I look forward to hearing back from you and I wish you all the best.


Danny Collins”

Example from eforms.com.

Sample 3

“December 4, 2017

Bonnie Grant

Big City Churc

44 Charles Street

Big City, NY 12000

(555) 555-5555

Dear Pastor Grant,

I have written this letter to inform you that I will be resigning from my position at Big City Church. I have made the decision to pursue a new career in entertainment where I hope to one day act on Broadway. My last day will be December 23, 2017.

My departure might come as some surprise to you as I have always been deeply committed to my position at the Church. However, I feel that at this point in my life I must take a ‘leap of faith’ and follow my dreams.

Your contributions have been appreciated and I will continue to uphold the values I have learned while serving under your leadership. You will always have a place in my heart.

Thank you once again for the opportunity.

Your friend,

Tanya Knowles”

Example from eforms.com.

Sample 4

“Veronica Sherman

100 Main Street

New Parkland, CA, 91010

September 1, 2014

Pastor Michael Williams

First Assembly Church

100 Broadway Lane

New Parkland, CA, 91010

Dear Pastor Williams,

It is with a very heavy heart that I am forced to resign my position as choir director for First Assembly Church effective two weeks from today. My husband’s transfer to Europe means that I am about to experience a whole new chapter in my life. While I am excited, I am also sad to leave behind the friends I have made.

I have discussed this situation with April Anderson and she is very anxious to discuss the possibility of her taking over this position with you. I fully endorse April as she is extremely talented and a very dedicated member of the choir. Her enthusiasm for the position also makes her the ideal candidate.

I would like to thank you for everything you have done to make my life so wonderful these past few years. My husband and I will both be sad to leave and we both wanted to tell you that you have enriched our lives so very much. If you need more details or further information, I can be reached by phone at 555-343-5432 until October 1, 2014. You can always reach me by email at vsherman@email.com.

Sincerely Yours,

Veronica R. Sherman”

Example from Template.net.

Sample 5 (Ministry)

“Dear Pastor Smith, Deacons and Congregation,

It is with great sadness that I must offer this letter of resignation from the Alliance Church as your Youth Minister. The past three years in which I have served the children, teens, and families of the church have been an experience filled with growth and love, one which I will always cherish. However, after much prayer, I have decided to follow a new path and join a year-long mission trip to Africa in which I will have the opportunity to serve others in a new and meaningful way.

Thank you so much to the families who have allowed me to be a part of their children’s lives. It has truly been my pleasure, and I feel I have learned as much or more from them than they have from me. You all have become a tremendously important part of my life, and I do not take this decision lightly.

The people of this church have become family to me. I am continuously impressed with the level of dedication to God and to each other, you all demonstrate. Thank you again for allowing me to be a part of your lives and for your support. I wish all of you grace and love.


Jeremy Boser”

Example from Template.net.

Sample 6 (Music minister)

“Dear Father Reynolds

It is with a bittersweet feeling that I write this letter to officially inform you that I will be resigning from my position as Music Minister with St. Michael’s Catholic Church effective two weeks from today October 3, 2014. While I have enjoyed every moment I have had in service to this congregation bringing music and the gospel to our members

As you know I must attend to personal family matters at this time. My mother is ill and requires round the clock care. Thus she will be moving into my family’s home and I will care for her as long as I am able. You have been a tremendous support to me during this stressful time and I appreciate the times you have prayed with me over the right decision to make. Your encouragement has meant the world to me.

My time here at St. Michael’s has been full of love, learning and growth. I will miss leading the music ministry but my family and I will continue to attend Sunday services as often as we can.

I will look forward to remaining an active member of our beloved congregation. Thank you again for all of your love and support during this time. Please do not hesitate to let me know if I can be of assistance in church or music ministry matters in the future.

Peace Be With You

Diane Ford

Music Minister”

Example from Livecareer.com.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do you write a letter of resignation from a church?

To write a letter of resignation from a church position consider:

– Expressing your intention of leaving the church.

– Inform your pastor you have thought deeply into it and briefly state the reason why you are leaving.

– Make sure you confirm your name has been removed from the church’s list of members.

How do you resign from a church leader?

To resign from being a church leader consider:

– Requesting a meeting with the pastor. Ask him to meet you face-to-face or send him an email scheduling a meeting with him. 

– Talk about your intention for leaving and briefly express the reason why.

– Return any items they may have given you. 

– Hand in your resignation letter.

How do you politely resign?

To be able to politely resign from any job position make sure you:

– Talk in person or send an email to your supervisor or manager to schedule a meeting.

– Write your resignation letter including the details from your employer and your details.

– Remember stating the notice period and the last day you will work for them.

– If you want, you can briefly state the reason why you are leaving.

– Avoid talking negatively about the company, colleagues, or your immediate boss.

– Let your employer know you will finish any pending tasks or work.

– Offer assistance to make a smooth transition. 

How do you write a short resignation letter?

If you want to write a short resignation letter remember to keep it professional, short, and straight to the point.

If you want you can briefly describe the reason why you are leaving, thank your employer for the opportunity, offer to help in the transition period, finish your resignation positively, add your preferred closing and sign it.

How do you say goodbye to a pastor?

To say goodbye to a pastor you can either have a meeting thanking your pastor for the time you spent at the church and all the good memories or you can write a letter stating you are leaving but you would like to thank them first for the time you were part of the church and for their unconditional support. 


Eforms.com: “Church (Religious Group) Resignation Letter Template – With Samples”

Template.net: “9+ Church Resignation Letter Templates”

Livecareer.co.uk: “Church Resignation Letter Example”

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