Youth Pastors should always have on their radar how they can serve, reach, and connect with schools in their community. Here are Six things I have learned about doing effective Campus Ministry:
1. Lose the Ego: “You’re not there to be cool.” Once you convince yourself that truth, you can finally get past the passivity that often comes with showing up on a campus and never getting anything accomplished.
2. Set a Goal: Walk onto a campus with purpose. Set a goal before you even get out of your car. Those goals can differ from day to day. Maybe it’s something simple like; learning one new students name/meeting the principal/learning the name of the administrator that always checks you in and always refers to you as “honey” and you refer to her as ma’am/meeting a new coach on campus/etc…
3. Be Available: When you show up to a campus, you should always find ways that you can serve that school. Most of the time, they’ll find something for you. Here’s the key; being available to do what they’ve asked and what you’ve offered. In fact, I have a friend that always says “We never say no to a school.” I love the heart, passion, and servant attitude of that statement. For some of you, that’s simply impossible as you don’t have the personnel or the budget. Maybe for some it’s “Never offer your service in a capacity to which you’re not willing and available to fill.”
4. Partner with On Campus Ministries: For some Youth Pastors, your local schools won’t allow you (the church) to come on the campus at all. Begin looking to see how you can partner with other organizations and ministries that already exist on the campus. (This in and of itself offers some interesting principles that I think we’ll blog about at a later time.)
5. Show Up! Ever told yourself when the school year starts that you’re recommitting yourself this year to investing in ________ Middle/High School and before you know it, it’s May and you haven’t been on that campus one time? Intentions are one thing…actions are another. Show up.
6. Commit: Effective campus ministry takes longevity. Your ministry will not thrive if you’re not continuously present on the campus. Become a regular and commit to being there for the long haul.
What about you? I realize this is not an exhaustive formula for success, so what would you add?