Blog

My Context with Tyson Herald from Danville, Indiana

December 18, 2017    
Keith Parker    
My Context

In the 13 years I’ve been involved in youth ministry, I’ve found that having clear expectations for my students and staff have proved to be invaluable. Having those expectations set out in a clear, easy to remember way is even better. With church attendance continuing to be sporadic at best, and everything in the world competing for our students’ time, thoughts, and energy, these 3 rules have helped shape what we do….    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 

My Context with Scott Tinman from Findlay, Ohio

December 11, 2017    
Keith Parker    
My Context

YouthMin is highlighting some student ministers and what makes their student ministries unique.  We’ve asked some folks from our YouthMin.org community to share something that is unique to their ministry.  It may be a culture, an event, a fundraiser, or even a lesson series.  Check out this series of posts for some inspiration. Annual Chili/Soup Cook-off & Auction Fundraiser Every summer we as a Student Ministry have either a conference or camp…    read more 

My Context with Greg Jones from Greenwood, Indiana

December 4, 2017    
Keith Parker    
My Context

Over the next few weeks, we are going to be highlighting some student ministers and what makes their student ministries unique.  We’ve asked some folks from our YouthMin.org community to share something that is unique to their ministry.  It may be a culture, an event, a fundraiser, or even a lesson series.  Check out this series of posts for some inspiration.   Hello, my name is Greg Jones and I am the…    read more 

Is Family Ministry Hurting Our Effectiveness? (by Brian Leslie)

November 14, 2017    
Keith Parker    

Catchy title, huh? Usually a title like that is simply click bait. However, I do sincerely wonder if the church’s focus on the family (pun intended) might be causing us to lose sight of our mission and even stifle our effectiveness.  Now before you throw me off a bridge, I do think the focus on family ministry has produced many good things, and even offered some needed correction to the modern practice…    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 

Helping Students and Leaders Own Their Ministry

October 30, 2017    
Keith Parker    
Students Own Ministry

Disclaimer: I have never written a blog post where I was preaching to myself more than this one. Here is a news flash: your ministry is not your own, and it is temporary. I just experienced this when I transitioned from a youth ministry I had led for 16 years and moved 6 hours away to begin a new youth ministry endeavor in a new context. The truth is, even if you…    read more 

20 Things I’ve learned in Student Ministry

August 29, 2017    
Nick Farr    

1. One leadership style isn’t effective for everyone. We’ve got to be willing to change it up depending on the person. 2. Form a parent leadership team. Ministry staff alone can’t be your only sounding board. 3. Over communicate. When you think you have, communicate more. 4. Gentleness and grace should be evident to all (Philippians 4). 5. Ask one or two trusted people to critique your messages (or even handpick a…    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 

The Best Kept Secret of Youth Ministry

June 12, 2017    
Nick Farr    

Let me tell you about one of the best-kept secrets of youth ministry: share the wealth. Time and time again I see youth pastors hoarding all of the authority and decision making skills in their ministries. I believe that this happens for a couple of different reasons. When I was starting out in youth ministry, I felt like I had to have all of the answers. I was the “leader, ” and…    read more