So much has happened in the past several months since the launch of Intentional Ministries!! First, let me say that the entire experience has been an incredibly stretching and constantly learning process. Not only has there been much learned about the very issue we desire to impact, but the growth curve in starting basically a small business had been far more than expected. And yet, our goal of equipping ministries to make life-long student disciples of Jesus Christ remains undeterred.
Over the past few months, the work of the ministry has begun to solidify into three main areas: Equip, Connect, and Develop. The Equip portion involves working directly with churches to implement not only a new model for doing student ministry, but also to teach a different ecclesiology of ministry. It is not enough to simply do ministry different, we must embrace an overall perspective that student ministry is about preparing youth to be a part of the church and to maintain faith for life. Sadly, this perspective on student ministry is radically different for most churches that often have fallen into an “evengetainment” mode (“evangelism through entertainment”). While our consulting process is still being ironed out in many ways, we are currently performing contracts with two churches and are having ongoing conversations with several other prospects throughout the state.
The unexpected element of the Equip segment is the number of pastors, associate pastors, and youth workers that have asked to be mentored. There are over a dozen individuals that I have been asked to mentor and that I talk with on a regular basis about life, ministry, and the future of the church. What is shocking is that many of these leaders admit to having been in ministry for years without ever having had a truly safe place to ask questions, search for answers, and seek advice.
The Connect portion of our work is focused on creating better ways to connect students with ministries and churches after high school graduation. For some, this involves a move away from home to attend college, while others chose to stay home for school or to simply enter the work force. Regardless of the direction a graduate chooses, we know that the vast majority will walk away from the church and from faith within two years. Even the students that remain at home will be a part of this trend or often look for a new local church. Our desire is to proactively engage students starting in their junior year of high school with the importance of having a plan for staying connecting after graduation. We have completed most of the technical planning phase for a web based technology that will assist students in this time of transition, and should enter the development phase in the near future.
Finally, the Develop aspect of the ministry creates curriculum for student ministry with the overall goal of creating life-long disciples at the core of each lesson. While four curriculum sets have already been created and utilized, the majority of the work in this area stills lies ahead. In time, a new web-based system is also planned to further facilitate youth discipleship as well.
Please continue to pray for our efforts – pray for wisdom, good stewardship of time and resources, and for doors to continue to be opened to expand the impact of this ministry. As always, any additional support you can offer through financial gifts, church contacts, or other networking opportunities is incredibly valuable to our efforts. With your support, together we can impact a generation that will impact the world!!!
For more information on Intentional Ministries or how you can support the work of the ministry, please contact me via a FB message or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org