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Utilizing Teens in Ministry

Robert Laurent’s book Keeping Your Teen in Touch with God states the #1 reason why teens fall away from God is lack of opportunity for meaningful church involvement.

The biggest key to teen involvement and commitment is involving them in every step of planning, goals, job descriptions, schedules, etc that is possible. People Support what they help to create. Teens don’t want to just be used for repetitive tasks. Why not involve them in total ministry and give them a significant title. I call my teens that assist me, Leaders in Ministry. But I don’t stop there with just a title. I developed, with their involvement, a job description for various tasks and spell out very specifically, what each task involves. Not all teens are gifted in all areas of ministry or even all areas of drama and puppetry. They will not be comfortable or effective in an area where they are totally uncomfortable. Doing a survey periodically of the various ministry needs with each teen will plug them in and stretch them to grown in ministry.

Teens are used in various functions of our Children’s Church program which include: registration, secretary, memory verse quizzer, overhead operator, sound booth, prayer closet, receiver of offering, rewarder of memory verse, teacher of new memory verse, organizing games, and assisting with an activities. They also minister with drama, puppet performances, and opportunities to minister at the altar. Each worker in our ministry wears a badge to identify them as responsible for the program. This is helpful for kids, reassuring to visitors, and an ego boost to teens.

As teens are involved in your ministry, they must become part of your prime focus for your ministry. You need to have a mind set that you want to multiply yourself in and through them. When these young people are ministered to, mentored, prayed for and prayed over, you will reap many benefits. Two such benefits will be that the teens will know they are important to your ministry and they will be faithful to support and grow with you.

Recreation needs to be an integral part of ministry with teens. Plan breaks away from ministry. Schedule time off from regular practices. Call a pizza party, skating night, bowling afternoon, trip to an amusement area, etc. Just have fun and let the kids see another side of you. The value in Fellowship is clearly indicated in the Bible. Use fellowship to bring your team closer together.

Main thing to keep in mind:
1) Ministry needs to be meaningful
2) Ministry tasks needs to be well defined
3) Teens need to be involved in all steps of ministry including script writing, play development, staging ideas, interpretation of songs, etc.

Used with Permission. Excerpts from Utilizing Teens in Ministry.
© by Rev. Richard Noble
Children’s Pastor
Smithfield, NC

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