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5 Ways To Instantly Recruit Volunteers

28 Aug

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It’s that time of the year again.

Every program in the church is gearing up for a major fall kick-off. In children’s ministry, this is one of the biggest times of the year. We will see families return after summer vacation and from the environment to the curriculum, we make sure everything is ready.

The only problem? We hope we have enough volunteers to welcome families – let alone run Sunday morning.

I will admit it, volunteer recruitment can be the most challenging part of ministry, yet also the most rewarding. No matter how well recruitment is accomplished, it always seems as if we could use one more volunteer.

If you feel as if you have exhausted all your avenues for new volunteers and are still running up short, below is a list of ways I have had success opening up new pipelines for people to start serving in the children’s ministry. While not exhaustive, use this list as a springboard for your own endeavors in recruitment this fall.

1. Youth Ministry – This might be a no brainer, but have you really considered involving teens in a serving role? If your church has a youth pastor, connect and talk about how to get more teens connected into the ministry. This might involve you speaking on a Wednesday night about serving or having the youth pastor hand pick a few key teens to start serving in some capacity.

2. Colleges – No matter where your church is located, you probably know of a few colleges or universities in the area. If they are Christian, great! Call the church connections department and see if they have a church fair you could attend. If it is a secular university, find out if they have any Christian clubs you could speak at. Don’t disregard eager students because the university is a ways away. If asked, college students wants to serve, especially if you provide breakfast or lunch before or after they serve.

3. Small Groups – If you belong to a Bible study or small group, see if anyone connected will serve. If you lead the group, make serving in the church a priority. Not that the group needs to serve in the children’s ministry, but to create a healthy culture of service. See if you can drop by any other small groups and take up a short amount of time casting vision and making the ask for more volunteers.

4. Social Media – Personal asks always go beyond general asks. However, if your church has a media platform, why not do a week long children’s ministry blitz? Show pictures of adults and teens serving in your ministry while providing clear steps in how to get plugged in.

5. Your Current Volunteers – Think about it. If each one of your current volunteers was able to find one more volunteer (a friend, spouse, small group member, etc.) each year, you would never run out of people serving in your ministry. The people currently serving in your ministry are your best resources to recruit more volunteers. Ask or challenge your current volunteers to connect with one person this year and bring them onboard the team.

I hope this list gives you some ideas to grab a few last minute volunteers as we dive into this school year. Next week will continue the discussion on volunteers as we explore how to develop a healthy team culture.

What is your best practice when it comes to volunteer recruitment? Share your strategies below!

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It’s Wedding Day

30 Jul

It was Christmas Eve. We had a surprise gift that year- a little guy coming 9 weeks early while we were out of town visiting family. I had a picture of him taped beside my bed while he fought for his life in NICU. I remember being scared to death. Would he make it? Would he have a future? Would I lose him?

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This 3 1/2 pound premie is now a  Children’s Pastor. He is funny and talented and energetic and thoughtful. He has brought us so much joy the last 22 years. I never imagined that day in the hospital bed that it would all turn out this way. But it did.  And today is his wedding day.

His fiance has been hanging around our home for almost five years now. They met in math class in high school- that first day he couldn’t take his eyes off her. So he pursued her like I’ve never seen anyone pursue someone. He was relentless. Somewhere along the way they fell in love.

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And our family fell in love with her.

Last September he drove her up to Duluth, Minnesota and along the North Shore stopping at Shovel Point. He led her out on a path overlooking Lake Superior, got down on one knee, and asked. She said yes. Some kind stranger recognized what was happening and quickly recorded the moment.

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Today they make it official but truthfully she has been a Goscha in our hearts for a long time.

It’s Wedding Day. The groom has left the house with his best men brothers and his groomsman cousin. My husband is upstairs- I can hear him moving around. And I’m sitting in a puddle of tears.

I’m overwhelmed with it all, I guess. How God has worked in our son’s life both physically and spiritually. I’m feeling like the most blessed mama in the world. I’m so full of gratitude for life and grace and love. I’m sad that our time with Zach in our home is closing but excited for the adventure he is beginning. I’m excited to welcome another daughter-in-law who has stolen our hearts. Sometimes it just feels like so much.

Today I will celebrate with incredible gratitude every single gift that God has given our family. It’s time to dry the tears. It’s time to move onto the next part of this great adventure of life and motherhood. It’s time to enter into this holy and sacred day with a full heart. engage city

Later today they will vow to serve God together. I’m not sure it gets any better than this.

 

Update: So this happened.

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Photo credit: Kallie Elizabeth Photography
Venue: Stillwater Historic Courthouse
Second shot with Jessica Stoe Photography

 

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Father’s Day

15 Jun

Each year Father’s Day creeps up on us. With Mother’s Day and Memorial day in the books and thoughts turned towards Fourth of July, Father’s Day thoughts often do not dawn until the weekend of the holiday. Plan something special for the fathers in your church community to thank them for the important task they have to be leaders in their homes and examples to their children.

Photobooth areas are a great way to capture a special memory or send a special greeting to your father or a father figure in your life. These photobooth pictures are from Mother’s Day, but could easily be altered to feature a fishing pole, football goal, or an array of comic books.

What are ways that your family or church shows appreciation to the father figures in your life?