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Adolescence

4 Moves To Grow and Transform A Campus Ministry

Bryant Westbrook
March 6th, 2020

Campus ministry is such an amazing opportunity to invest in students and see what God can do through them. A campus ministry can be defined as an FCA program, Young Life program, bible club or prayer group. Whatever the campus ministry looks like it’s an amazing opportunity to invest in students! Here are four ways to grow or transform your campus ministry that I’ve been practicing over the last year that’s proven effective.

STUDENT OWNERSHIP

I started volunteer leading a bible club at the local middle school. When I took it over I did all of the speaking. I was the sole leader for quite some time. Students would come to hear a talk and then discuss in groups. That was our structure for a while and it was going well with no problems. Although there is nothing wrong with that structure, I knew that it was time to change the direction of the club.

It wasn’t until last spring when the decision to completely change the structure and leadership of the bible club happened. To initiate the change, a small number of students gathered with the same interest and heart to be the leaders of the club.

These students were told that ownership of the club was being transferred to them and that they were going to be the core team in charge of the entire group. I was stepping back as the main leader and stepping into more of a support role for the leadership team. The students took the challenge. They made a sheet of speakers, which were students, and they took ownership of advertising the club. They were able to do this in a whole new way because they had access to the school. An access I didn’t have as an outsider.

STAFF BUY IN

The students now lead the club and I am in a support role. Along with me, there are two staff members who are teachers at the school that also support the leadership group. Every week the three of us attend the club as a support team. The students feel empowered knowing they’ve got me and two of the teachers supporting them in their journey of leadership. The teachers have been instrumental in helping the students advertise the group by helping the students learn how to access the school’s morning announcements.

SWAG (STUFF WE ALL GET)

Although the club is student lead, we know that students don’t have access to a budget. As a supporter of the bible club, I was able to get permission to use some of my budget from the youth ministry at the church where I work to support the club. 

Two ways we’ve done swag at the club. First, was different colored WWJD bracelets. The students wear them to club and they are super easy to pass out to their friends as well. Second, I had some of my students help design a t shirt. The design was a hit. Every week at least one student wears the shirt and they use it to invite their friends.

PRAY WITH THE STUDENTS

Although the students lead upfront, they still need to be guided by an adult for development. I help them pray for the club on a regular basis. Together we pray for the growth of the club, for God to work in the school, and for hearts to be changed within the student body. Consistent prayer has helped the students see that praying for something persistently, just like Luke 11 tells us, creates a way for God to move.


Still digging for ideas? Check out 4 Solid Strategies For Impacting Your Local School and 6 Ideas For Your Youth Ministry To Impact Local Schools for more churning through the local school impact strategies.

Bryant Westbrook

Bryant Westbrook is the youth director at First United Methodist Church is Valley Center, KS. Bryant has served as a missionary in Alaska, program staff for YouthWorks, treatment counselor for teens and has a passion for student leadership. Bryant's contact is bryant@fumcvc.com and he blogs at bryantwestbrook.wordpress.com.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in the YS Blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of YS.

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