Ben Read

Student Ministry end of year banquet

April 19, 2018     Ben Read    
youth group end of year banquet ideas

A tradition I picked up from one of the churches I served at was holding an end of year banquet for our student ministry. It’s always a huge way to win with families and we have been able to use it to accomplish a few different purposes. Our end of year banquet serves as a great way to send off Seniors, as we hold it close to graduation time, and though seniors…    read more 

We’re better together #OC18

December 11, 2017     Ben Read    
youth ministry conference

I can’t believe it’s going to be 2018 soon, and writing that title with #OC18 was a bit surreal as I remember writing blog posts for #OC11, back when hashtags we’re a very different thing. The 2018 Orange Conference is coming up soon and there is no better time to sign up than right now. In fact, if you sign up by December 14, you can save $70 per person AND get…    read more 

Waffle Things

November 13, 2017     Ben Read    
stranger things game

I Loved this game idea submitted by Jon D Forrest in the YouthMin.org Facebook group, and I wanted to share it here so that it would live longer than just on Facebook. Jon uploaded a video of a student tossing in a waffle from about 10 feet away and said “Goodwill toaster-$3.99. Frozen waffles-$1.50. SLO-mo video-priceless.” Seems simple enough to come up with different variations, but if you’ve got a stranger things…    read more 

3 things to remember when recruiting volunteers for your ministry

August 23, 2017     Ben Read    
attracting leaders for your ministry

It seems like a million years ago, but once upon a time I remember nearly tripling the amount of small group leaders in our student ministry over the course of 8 weeks. It was an incredible experience, and an incredible time in our ministry. How we did it was actually fairly simple; a clear vision for why we needed so many new volunteers, a clear recruitment process with me and my team,…    read more 

Why I try and attend the Orange Conference every year

February 16, 2017     Ben Read    

I’m wearing a T-shirt today that simply says “It’s just a phase, so don’t miss it.” I bought it a few years ago at the Orange Conference when this was the theme, and it’s one that I wear on a consistent basis, not just because it’s an extremely comfortable shirt, but because of the mission it reminds me of. IT’S NOT ABOUT CURRICULUM. I’ve been blessed to get to go to the…    read more 

Our favorite resources for this Christmas season

November 30, 2016     Ben Read    

We’ve got a ton of Christmas resources that are being added each week, but we’ve also got a ton of great ones from years past. Here’s a look at a few of our favorites that you’ll want to be sure to check out!   This is why I’m broke Christmas Reverse Charades Christmas Trivia Name That Candy Short Stories:Christmas Edition 3 Words or Less: Christmas Edition Are you there God? 2 week…    read more 

Christmas gift ideas for ministry volunteers

November 16, 2016     Ben Read    
ministry volunteer gift ideas

I don’t know about you, but I sort of hate November in the ministry world. Hear me out, it can be a crazy month! You just got through the craziness of Fall Launch, which always seems like it was forever ago, yet also feels like it was just last week. Maybe you just wrapped up a crazy time leading into Halloween, maybe you had a fall retreat somewhere in there, and now it’s November. You…    read more 

The truth about deeper messages

November 7, 2016     Ben Read    
Going Deeper in Messages

Chances are, if you’ve spent anytime in Youth Ministry, you’ve been criticized for not being “deep” enough. I remember hearing this from my Sr. Pastor several years ago, who laughed the student off because he knew we were wrapping up a 6 week series on Exodus, after having done 4 weeks in Esther, and we were going to be in Revelation coming up. The content was plenty deep enough, so there must…    read more 

6 great Worship songs for Youth Group

August 11, 2016     Ben Read    
youth group worship programming

I’m fortunate enough to have an intern who helps lead our Jr. High Worship, but I still oversee our High School Worship. I’ve always been a fan of choosing a selection of songs and keeping them, rotating a handful out at the end of the year (or sometimes, semester breaks), so your band and group can get to know the songs really well, while also being exposed to new songs. I was blessed…    read more 

The Race

May 16, 2016     Ben Read    
youth ministry video

Our Jr. High team has been having some fun the last several weeks making stupid video openers for our service, here’s one we did this past week pitting me verse one of our college leaders.