General Ministry

A little survey, brainstorm, networking, get ideas from one another deal here. Working in college age ministry requires us to have volunteers. Much of what we do can be – and should be – led by college age people themselves. But, as you’re likely aware, I’m very big on having older believers invest in college age people. Thus, we need people.

I have done a variety of things to equip and train these leaders. My question for you is, are there any resources (books, articles, websites, etc.) you’ve given your adult volunteers to help them be more effective in their ministry to college age people? If you list some, make sure to briefly comment about how it’s helped them.

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  • Logan Gentry says:

    We’ve utilized Total Church by Steve Timmis as a way to translate our DNA to our adult volunteers to allow them to lead their students, but I think our ongoing bi-weekly training which involves face to face time and collabortation amongst our coaches (adult volunteers) is the most beneficial in regards to working with the specific age group.

  • Jason Robinson says:

    Our strategy is a bit organic in that we ask our adult volunteers to simply be a part of our events and develop relationships with students. In time, there tends to be a natural “mentoring” that takes place. This is then formalized at various times throughout the year when we focus on teaching about accountability and mentoring. The relationships already exist and are just given structure. We train the volunteers to work with students and teach them to be ready to be a Mentor.

  • Chuck says:

    Jason, thanks! Do you use any resources/books for the training part?

  • Steve says:

    Chuck – we’ve used some of your resources, including information from the handouts at your seminars. Our adult volunteers found your Fuller Youth Institute podcast on “Faith Moratorium” to be particularly useful.
    Resources on late adolescence help older generations to understand how their perspective of their own early twenties may differ from the current generation of college students and grads. I found the book “The Myth of Maturity: What today’s Teenagers Need from Parents to Become Adults” by Terri Apter to have a lot of insight into late adolescence, although her proposed responses to the probelms she identified had nothing to do with faith or God, so it falls short in th bigger picture.
    Lastly, I think that college students have respect for adult volunteers who are open and vulnerable, and most of all, humbly “pressing forward” towards their own call of spiritual maturity. They do not seem to respect adults who settle into a spiritual stasis while preaching change for everyone else around them. So, resources that challenge a status quo spirituality among adult volunteers – and encourage a lifetime journey of faith – are very helpful.

  • […] about using / training college ministry volunteers. Chuck Bomar has gotten a few good comments on his request for helpful methods / resources for this area. And though I’m not sure it’s applicable […]

  • Tim Simpson says:

    We share some Tim Elmore material with them on generational differences. I try to tell them what books I’m reading.
    We have asked our adult Sunday school classes to provide a meal for our college students once a month on Sunday nights which we call College Community Dinners. Then we’ve asked them to hang around and talk to the students. We are trying to be more intentional with this because most of the adults just gathered at a table with each other, ate, and talked. For the one in January, we are going to have all the University employees who attend our church to come, eat, and sit with the students at 8 person round tables. We’ll introduce each adult and tell what part of campus they work for. We’d like to have a career dinner where different adults in our church share a little about what they do and then give students an opportunity to build relationships with them by asking them questions or out to lunch. I know this seems like a long process but it helps us find adults who love college students.
    We also invite our college Sunday School teachers to attend all of our events for free. The students love it when they show up at our retreats, Christmas Party or Thrift Store Formal.
    I try to spend one on one time with each of our Sunday School teachers once a semester and allow them to bounce ideas for their classes off of me and just love on them.

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