Re-evaluating the Essentials of Ministry in a Pandemic

Sami and Catie both fill dual roles as local youth pastors and co-leaders for youth ministry in the UMC Minnesota Conference. When you’re not at the grad party, the concert, the track-meet, you miss the accidental time in between all the programming that makes youth ministry so important in the lives of our students. How do you plan opportunities to recapture some of that in a socially-distanced world? Sami and Catie have some great insight for us.

Focus your energy on the non-negotiables.

It can be easy to feel pulled in a million directions right now, which is why it’s so much more important to keep your energy focused on the non-negotiables of your ministry. Those things that are most important to us need our greatest attention and resources. Once we have those pieces in place, we can add in the other crazy ideas we come up with along the way.

Invest in smaller groups and higher relational opportunities.

Get away from the mindset of “only [insert your number] kids showed up” as if that’s a bad thing. Because it can still be a win! Remember, those kids showed up in a pandemic! Focus your energy on the ones that do show up so that you don’t miss out on the opportunity to invest in that relationship. 

Listen well and ask LOTS of questions.

As you go, don’t assume that things work. Survey your students and families regularly and be ok with their honest feedback. Getting their feedback helps bring out the things that are working and it helps you move on from the things that don’t work.

You have so many questions, concerns, and unique pressures right now, and that makes planning a mission trip even more difficult in this season. That’s why we created YW Extended Care.

YW Extended Care

YW Extended Care was created for you to name exactly what you need, how we can support you, and invite our team alongside you during this time. Don’t do any of it alone. We’ve got your back.

And if you’re a UMC youth worker in MN, be sure to connect with Sami and Catie through the UMC Minnesota Conference: