Welcome to part 2 of a special 5 part podcast series, Zac and Chad will walk you through the five stages of youth ministry growth. You will learn where your ministry is currently, and how to get to where you want to go.
If you haven't read and listened to part 1 then go here first.
Phase 2 Build
The boost into building phase is characterized by the desire to start building stuff. You have listened well, take good notes, and now after the time of research and discernment, your mind is racing with all the ideas and potential.
This is the season where dreams about youth group names, personalized games, stylish t-shirts, well-designed youth rooms and a culture of disciple-making all begin to take shape. It’s okay to let your mind race and go wild you have put in the time researching now its time to start brainstorming and building.
In the Build phase of your youth ministry, you should be focused on getting some of these things in place. Don’t neglect these necessary building block.
- Enough adult volunteers- background checked, interviewed, and eager to help
- A helpful curriculum and teaching strategy. We love and recommend Grow.
- An event calendar that is mapped at least 6-9 months.
- A meaningful weekly program/gathering.
- A few key students that help out and are a sounding board for what will ultimately come next.
Build Phase Question: What will it take to make my ministry viable?
In the Build phase, we start with our answers from Discover Phase and begin to design our specific ministry vision and strategy. It is the values from this early round of questions that will inform and form our mission and vision statements.
Building A Ministry Brick by Brick in Six parts
Work out the plan of what it might look like. Design your ideas for the now and next. Yes, you may not have all you want now but what all could be reasonably accomplished in the next 3 months.
2. Write it Out
Writing it out commits you to your plan at a higher level. Writing it down creates a stronger sense of accountability. It also makes it shareable. As much as we think we remember the ideas we have and the stuff we say, we don't. A written from forces us to think through, work hard, and have an artifact to show for our ideas and effort.
After you write it down share it around. Share it with your YMB mastermind and ask for feedback. Share it with your senior leadership and ask for input. In the same way you would approach a bank officer for small business loan, craft a ministry plan. Put a cover page on it and print it out. Committing to writing is small but significant for the both idea and the editing process.
3. Casting Vision
The (over)communication piece. You have heard a lot from a lot of people, you have thought a lot about the youth ministry, now it is time to communicate it. Talk about it, yes. Email about it, yes. Create a packet or brochure about, please! Vision is t more often caught than taught! Cast it out there so people can catch it.
A. Shape The Vision
Here’s where we want to go. This is the big idea. The purposeful powerful statement that anchors your ministry to your local church.
Sample Vision Statements
"Make disciples of Jesus that transform our city"
"Safe place for students to meet God's transforming grace”
B. Form Your Strategy
Here’s how we are going to get it done. This is the building blocks of what elements it will take to accomplish the vision. You can’t teach the whole Bible in a series, but you could in a 3-6 strategy. You can’t have highly developed small groups by Sunday, but you could stress their importance by meeting weekly.
It is important to note here that some of this stuff may get changed later, and that’s okay. You are starting with your first best guess in this phase.
4. Get To Work!
This may take weeks or a few months but get your stuff together and get it done. Involve other people! There are folks in the church who have heard your vision statement, read your printed/emailed out plan and want to help. They may not be long-term volunteers for the ministry, but they are pretty handy with a paintbrush, hammer, or computer. Know what you want and be okay asking for help. Everyone loves to help the (re)new youth ministry with a plan succeed!
5. Launch The Thing!
Your “first day” of youth ministry is not actually your first day on the job. You pick an appropriate launch day. Work towards a deadline or season change. Whether it is January 1st or September 1st pick the right season to ramp into and launch! The build of anticipation is key in getting you the momentum you desired.
6. Celebrate The Work!
Even more exciting than the launch is the celebration. You have to do this, you have to celebrate! Not enough people do this. Most ministry leaders just do the vision, work, launch waltz and never take the time to celebrate how hard you worked and how much time that it took to make it all possible. Even if it was not the full version of what you hoped it would be it is the still a reflection of the work you and others.
So, eat some pizza after the big work day, training weekend or remodel/painting party, or host a game night or dance party in the newly remodeled youth room.
Come back for the next phase as we talk about what it means to move from Building it all to Developing your ministry into something totally awesome!
What About You, Which Phase Are You In?
If you’re at this phase, did this episode resonate with you? Let us know in the comments!
OR, if you’re at this phase but we didn’t talk about what you’re going through, tell us that as well.
OR, if you’ve been at this phase before, can you tell us a story about what you remember from this stage?