Monday, October 22, 2007

    Building Relationships

    Three years ago, when I started serving Broadway Christian Church, I spent a lot of time forming relationships with my youth. I felt that before I could do any significant planning, or discern the future of the youth ministry, I needed to know each youth as well as possible. For me, I found five main ways to develop relationships: 1) calling up each youth and inviting them to youth group and/or visiting them at their house; 2) taking pizza to their school and joining them, and their friends, for lunch; 3) sending each youth a personalized birthday card (cut out from the back of my cereal boxes); 4) praying for, and with, my youth; and 5) making sure youth knew that I was always available to chat, email, pray, or just hang out. Fortunately, I’ve been able to keep up with each of these practices. I spend a lot of time in schools, talking on the phone, emailing, and visiting. But, I’m always looking for new methods of relationship building.

    So, how about each of you? How are you connecting with the youth in your ministry?


    Calvin said...

    Because I'm part-time at my current ministry, and because I'm a full-time seminary student, I find myself connecting a lot over instant messenger and facebook. I don't think these are as good as face-to-face encounters, but they do provide some time to get to know students that I wouldn't otherwise have. I also try to take students out to lunch or dinner on occasion, when they are available.

    I'm not a big phone person, but I may take a page out of your playbook and try doing that - or at least texting more than I do.

    Brian said...

    I have to admit, I hate talking to kids on the phone. I'd much rather have a face to face chat, but when not possible, I go with Facebook mostly, plus I take time each week to mail notes to different students, sometimes to let them know I missed seeing them at youth group or often just to say hi or to affirm their gifts.

    jeremy zach said...

    you forgot to add: To make a facebook page.