I moved around a lot as a kid. The hardest part about it was being the new guy. Especially going to school, I was never sure if I was doing the right thing or in the right place. It was overwhelming.
Big or small your ministry is going to experience new teens. The question you have to answer is:
“How are you going to welcome them?”
While it’s not rocket science it does take intentionality. Here are four steps you can take to make your ministry more welcoming to new teens:
Growing up I saw a few teenagers serving at church, but never knew how they got plugged in. Outside of altar serving it’s like you needed a special connection. Someone had to pull strings if you were going to serve with other adults. It was a little frustrating.
It’s important for teenagers to serve in your parish. It will inspire other generations and teach them how to behave as the church body.
Teenagers want to get involved at your church, they just need to get plugged in. As a youth minister you need to work with the rest of your staff. Create a system where you:
I still have those dreams of walking into the first day off high school totally not prepared for the year. You know that dream? You are missing books, your schedule…even your pants? Okay, maybe not that extreme. Getting ready for the fall season of youth ministry can have the same pressures.
Over the next few weeks kids will start going back to school. As they get ready they’ll:
- Buy their school supplies.
- Get to know their schedule.
- And maybe pick up some new outfits.
As a youth ministry it’s time to get ready, especially if you have not already started. It’s that last push to before the fall season starts. To make sure you are ready for the year ahead here are 3 actions that you need to take to start the year off right:
He was a “Hard To Love” teenager. Deep down inside you knew he was a good kid, but he was just too much of a disruption. There we were with his parents discussing what to do with the situation.
In the end we developed a plan to have him take a break for a week. It was tough, but in the end worth it. As he got older he matured and became a great student leader.
It felt more like a band practice than a night of worship. No one was showing up to our student ministry. We had 4 teens in the student band, 1 running our tech and then each week there would be a visiting teen who would never return. It felt demoralizing.
Attendance is one of the most frustrating parts of youth ministry. When no one shows up we can feel like a failure. When the RSVP’s for an event are low we consider canceling. When no one is coming it’s easy to consider a different career. Instead of growing helpless, start taking action by: