Volunteers: Multiplying Your Ministry Effectiveness
By Rob Brower • interlinc Editor • Tumwater, Washington
Every good leader knows that they are only as good as the team they have behind them. Throughout my years as a Youth Pastor, I have been extremely blessed to have an amazing group of volunteers that loved loving on kids as much as I did. They would show up early on Youth Nights, stay late to help clean up, run errands as needed, join me at sporting events, band and orchestra concerts, school plays, you name it.
As I peruse the many Youth Ministry groups and pages of social media, I see a lot of comments from newer Youth Pastors asking questions about where to find volunteers, how to keep volunteers, how to train volunteers, etc. It makes me wonder if they aren’t teaching this in our Bible schools or seminaries.
Whenever I see a Youth Pastor going it alone, just grinding it out in their ministry with no volunteers it’s usually either one of two situations:
Perhaps they are the lone wolf type. They like going solo. Maybe they’ve tried their hand at volunteers but felt they could just do things better. And they’re probably right. Their volunteers may not be as good at designing social media posts, or running games, handling the tech stuff, or delivering that compelling message that will save every last teenager that hears it. But, that’s not the point. The fact remains that a Youth Pastor can only handle a maximum of 50-60 high-level relationships. So after you count the friends and family, how many does that leave? Don’t forget your coworkers and parents that you draw close to. How many slots does that leave for loving on students?
The fact is that a single person simply can not reach as many students effectively without help.
The theme of the current Youth Leaders Only Digital Box is Volunteers: Multiplying Your Ministry Effectiveness. In addition to the newest Christian, worship, and mainstream music, you get all the great Articles, Bible studies, and selections from Jeff Martin’s amazing book when you join YLO!
The other type of solo Youth Pastor is the one that just doesn’t seem to know anyone interested in working with teenagers. They post it in the bulletin and announce it from the stage but get no response.
It’s all about building relationships. Take time to get to know people both inside and outside of your church. Know your mission. Have a vision. Share them both with passion. For most, the vision will be caught not taught.
Create multiple opportunities to serve. Some people will never be stoked about playing messy games, teaching Bible lessons, or giving the message, but they might enjoy making that Costco run for the big youth event. And if they decline, at least you have one more person praying for you and your ministry.
This issue of Youth Leaders Only is all about volunteers. There are many great articles and resources written by veteran youthworkers that are sure to help you multiply your ministry effectiveness.