Phillip C. from VA asks: “Hi, I am a Youth Pastor in VA. I have a quick question… What do I do when the attendance starts to dwindle down? Like, we usually average about 75 students weekly but our ministry team has notice that has decrease to about 40-45 students. Any suggestions?”
— PRAY, COMPEL & PREACH…
Allen M. from NY asks: “What are the best ways you have found for networking with other youth pastors?”
— For me, just calling up a local youth pastor and offering to spend time with them over coffee or lunch. Make sure you pay, as you are the one who wants to initiate the relationship. Ask lots of questions and really listen to their heart. // Use non-service nights well. Meaning, if your student services are on Sunday nights.. find local youth ministries who have services on Wednesday or Friday night and go “hang” with their teams. // Partner with them on ministry things such as youth camps, missions/service projects and city-wide events.
Tyler H asks: “As a youth pastor… who sets the vision of the youth ministry?”
— God sets the vision for his church and/or ministries. God has a vision, he releases the vision to the Pastor, the pastor then allows leaders and church members/attenders to capture this vision for the house. As a youth pastor, it is your responsibility to have a vision from God. If both visions (Lead Pastor and Youth Pastor) are from God, they will align up with what God wants to accomplish through this local church. I cannot stress this enough: Youth Pastor, honor your Lead Pastor and the vision of the house. In ministry and in life, honor goes along way! If your vision doesn’t align with what the church’s vision from the Lead Pastor, then its time to evaluate .. “Was this vision given by God?” & “Am I willing to help someone else vision go forth?”
*I promise you, when you honor your Lead Pastor and the church you serve… God honors you. You will find that the dreams and goals you have are easier to accomplish, because you serve someone elses dreams.
Mark W. asks: “What’s your thoughts on Interns or apprenticeships?”
— I believe that they are beneficial to both the ministry and the person. If done right, the individual will gain valuable experience in ministry & draw closer to God. Don’t be the ministry/pastor that burn out the interns, over-working & overwhelming them. There should be a time for ministry (small groups, mission/serving), a time of work (office duties), a time of fun (leisure, recreation) and a time of growth (teaching, training, personal study). These 4 things I believe are necessary. At the end of the internship (depending on ministry & the intern) either bring this person on staff, offer a deeper or intense internship or release them to do ministry with another church who needs/want them.
Michael D. asks: “Should we as YP teach on Hell and the End-Times?”
— YES! Jesus preached on these things, so should we. My rule of thumb is, if Jesus preached/taught on it… it’s important to preach & teach on those same things. Often pastors stay away from teaching on Eschatology (study of the End-Times or Final events) because them themselves don’t know much on it. My suggestion is to study the Biblical truths (Revelation, Daniel, Isaiah, etc.) and gain knowledge concerning what is apparently coming sooner rather than later. Matthew 24 says that we are to know the Sign of the Coming of this Age. Its NOT to be our main focus, but we are to be aware (alert) and equipped (ready)! We ARE living in the Last Day that has been prophetically released according to the Biblical truths.