This is my eighth post in my series The 9 Dynamic Ways To Revive Your Youth Ministry. You can start the series HERE
I can remember a parent coming to me with a concern that middle school girls (of which she had one) was not getting enough attention. I responded, as I always do, with, “So what you’re saying is, you have a burden for middle school girls and you’d like to help out?” She agreed and taught middle school for about six weeks. I give her a ton of credit and she brought a new energy to the ministry.
Whenever I can get a parent to participate, it changes the dynamics of the group, mostly for the better. There have been those times where that’s not the case, but I’ve had more positive experiences than negative.
When parents participate, they lend their power, their gifting, their authority and their fun side. Yes, their fun. Some of these parents can be fun. They’re the cool parent everyone likes. Sadly, many of these “cool” parents bale because they don’t want to infringe upon their kids need to be autonomous.
I think parents can make great team leaders, game leaders, and goodwill ambassadors for the youth ministry. Now, it gets a bit hairy if you ask that parent to lead a small group on sex with their kid in the room. I avoid that at all costs, but overall, parents are just people. It’s our paranoia that gets the better of us in believing parents want nothing more than to be a nuisance and a pain.
We shouldn’t fear parents, we should embrace them. I have an open room policy where parents can come watch what we do any time they want. I Facebook live many of our meetings so parents can go back and watch them later.
One of the many dangers of distancing parents is that we lose perspective. We think we’re the man (or woman) with a plan and these parents will just mess it up. Forging positive bonds with parents can give our youth ministry the much needed boost it needs. Give it a try.
One more post, the last in this series, Relentlessly Poking The Revival Fire