Over on his blog “Life in Student Ministry“, Tim Schmoyer has a list of 100 topics he hopes others will blog about. Number 67 caught my eye, and its really the only one I feel I can write about as a rookie, and so here it goes.
I am a rookie Youth Pastor. Sure, I have a few years experience as a part time guy while going through college ( I mean, if I didn’t, I most likely wouldn’t have even been looked at by search teams) but when it comes to Full time, 40 hours a week (not likely, I know that’ll most likely be a down week) Kick you in the gut Youth Ministry, I am a rookie. Beyond a rookie, really, I don’t even start until the first week in January.
So I scour the Internet for hours a day sometimes, looking for any advice I can on Youth Ministry. Some sites are horrible ( Something about small town youth pastors, and the poll it had of “small” towns revealed that if you weren’t L.A. or N.Y., you were in a small town. Not much help to a guy in appomattox, a town of 1200, when most of what you are saying deals with towns of 60,000 and youth groups of 60 kids). Other sites are great, like the one linked above.
But they still lack some stuff that as a rookie, I am dying for. I need that practical advice from others who have been in my shoes, scared out of their minds that they are honestly going to be responsible for 35 sr. highers and 25 jr. highers come january. But its not out there. It seems the only thing that is practical is Doug Fields “Your First two years in youth ministry”, but I know that every Youth Pastor had to start somewhere.
So my challenge is for all of the Youth Pastor bloggers to write blogs for the guys like me, and anything would help, on some of the following topics;
1) What advice would you tell a guy just starting out in Youth Ministry? ( Kind of the obvious one from this post)
2) What would you tell a rookie to do in terms of laying out the framework for his ministry from the beginning?
3) (A topic I could have used a few weeks ago, but again, nothing) How do you go about breaking up with a Youth Group when your leaving? (Bonus points: How do you go about leaving a church when you are their fourth guy in four years, and the Sr. Pastor is the only one who understands that a Youth Pastor cant put in full time work for part time pay? What do you do with the parents and other adults who now “hate” your guts?)
4) What resources do you recommend to the rookie Youth Pastors?
5) What resources do you recommend every Youth Group Budgets for?
and Bonus number 6) How do you go about planning a mission trip for the first time, I am sure someone most likely will have some advice on this, please please please.