Ever read something that immediately was a gut check for you? Perusing my email inbox, I came across a message from a core member that I felt not only her youth minister needed to read, but all of us in youth ministry could benefit from. Here is the core members unedited letter.
I am a CORE member at a parish in California and this may be a rant but most of all it’s a PLEA! Our parish is huge and the life teen youth ministry is well known and established. The ministry has SO much potential yet. If only the youth minister would, I don’t know take a few minutes to listen.
I will list a few things that I think would benefit ALL youth ministers. I would love to say it to them IN THE MOST CHARITABLE WAY POSSIBLE!
1. Don’t take things personal.
When CORE members are late or don’t show up to things don’t take it personal. When a youth minister takes things personal it becomes about the commitment to the youth minister and not to the God and his Church (the teens). This can be dangerous. Call the CORE member on to their commitment to the teens and show them the covenant.
2. Have some confidence.
The CORE members respect you. When you say things or would like something done say it with Confidence. Gods work is good… we are all servants I need you to have some confidence, so I can!
3. YOU DON’T NEED TO BE COOL!
Ummm 1990’s called and they said they missed you! Please go back! Having the newest Ipad is cool if you want one… but having one because the teens think its cool and you think you are going to win points with them if you have one is a different story. The teens are teens they have an excuse to act how they act (sort of haha). You don’t need to try and dress like them either. Its ok!
4. Let your core do the work!
Its ok to if your not the relational queen or king… we know you have to schedule and do “stuff”. Let the CORE do the work. Let the CORE make the phone calls to the teens, meet with them, give the talks, and be relational. After all, that’s what we’re here for.
5. ITS NOT ABOUT YOU!! (or ME!!)
When you are not credited for something or if the teens don’t always look to you for the answers its OK just keep doing the work of the Lord. ITS ABOUT GOD! Lets remember “leading teens closer to Christ”
6. Be authentic.
Your degree, your camera, your clothes, your ipod, the shows you watch, the cool videos you try to show, the newest things that are out …None of those things matter… It’s a shame when youth ministers get caught up in those things… and lose sight of the ministry. Be authentic. Live a life, a holy life all to glorify God. That will speak volumes over the materialistic mumbo jumbo.
The ministry is bigger than us and the teens deserve so much more! If we can give it them then.
We (the CORE) Love you! We support you! We definitely could not do what you do! Thank God for you…. So please just be YOU!
(The author of this letter gave me permission to post it on this blog and wished to remain anonymous)