Tuesday, January 13, 2009

    The Worst Youth Ministry in the World!

    What would the worst youth ministry in the world look like? Why not ask your youth? 

    I have found it helpful to get out of a rut of routines and "that's the way we've always done it" attitudes by periodically surveying youth about how they are feeling about the way things are going in the youth group. It is their ministry, after all --not just something we impose upon them. Why not take take a reading of how they are feeling about things?

    Sometimes I do this with a formal written survey, asking them to rate recent activities, discussions, and programs and soliciting ideas for new studies, guest speakers, trips, and so on. But one approach that always yields interesting results is to invite youth to describe the opposite of what they want the youth ministry to be. What would be the worst place to meet? The worst time to meet? The worst activities? Worst food? Worst leadership? Worst traditions? Worst games? Worst music? Worst ways to treat visitors? Not only is this more fun to do than a regular survey, if you brainstorm together as a group you'll receive a lot of funny and useful information (just be prepared that some of the stuff that winds up in their "worst" categories may be things you are already doing!).


    Marv Nelson said...

    This is some good insight. I've done the surveys as you said as to what would they want, but never what's the worst...this is BETTER than the what do you want, because teens ALWAYS know what they don't want but RARELY know what they do want!

    Brian and Jacob said...

    Hey Marv. Yes, I have definitely found what you say to be true in my own experiences with teens. Actually, adults can be that way a lot of the time, too!

    Tim said...

    This is so true. Most students will never, ever complain about your service or ministry. However, they may secretly hate it, and loathe attending. The trick is getting them to elaborate...