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Student Ministry

I had someone ask why is our student ministry growing? First off, do you notice how I said "our" vs "my"? I'm not a big fan of saying it's my ministry, because in the trenches, it's really not my ministry but a combination of awesome leaders who work ALONGSIDE me. But I guess that can be a different post.

If you're a progressive leader (in which I would consider myself) you may not like my answer. In January I STOPPED focusing on how to build an ATTRACTIVE MINISTRY and STARTED focusing on building ATTRACTIVE RELATIONSHIPS.

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As I looked at the ministry as a whole, I stayed at church real late after a youth service to debrief with me, myself, and I. My heart was aching for the students that we're faithful in coming but I didn't feel complete me as a leader. I have a heart for outreach, for the broken hearted that don't attend church, for the ones walking in the school hallways that are dealing with issues that even their closest friends don't know about.

So I made a shift in our strategy.

After spending some time in prayer, I grabbed a legal pad and began writing down as many students that I knew off hand. Then I went to our online data base and grabbed all the students who have been coming. For the next few weeks I wrote notes on them from the outcome of conversations. Sports, favorite things in life, biggest hurdles, biggest wins, schedule for school, life events, etc.

I shared these with the rest of the leaders.

Every Monday I would begin to pray for these students BY NAME! We started asking questions ABOUT THEM. We started investing our conversations that pertained to THEM.

We changed our sermon series to things that came about in our conversations. (We never picked out a specific conversation, but when planning our series, we would notice specific themes and those would be concentrated on).

After a month with this change of mentality. I got a phone call from a parent. A parent who DID not go to our church (Say what?!) She had heard from another parent of what we've been talking about in youth and that her daughter really never fit in anywhere. She said she had been hearing great things about our student ministry and they we're praying that her daughter would find a place to connect.

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Notes

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Posted in Recreation and leisure Post Date 05/10/2018


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