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Youth Ministry Rules

July 24, 2009

After speaking with Steve Robbins earlier this week and surfing the Ministry Questions website, I’ve noticed that many youth pastors/leaders are questioning what rules and consequences need to be established for their youth ministries.  So, to help everyone, here is the one rule and it’s consequences that I set in stone in my youth ministry and will do so to every youth ministry that I lead.

The Rule

I have only one youth group rule: RESPECT! Respect means, “giving special attention to something or someone.”  So, established is that everyone in the youth ministry will respect…

  1. God.
  2. I keep God first in the ministries that God places me in.  As a youth pastor, I don’t do anything without consulting God first.  Sure, I can’t force my students to believe in Him or to do what is right, but as long as they’re in my youth ministry they will respect Him.

  3. Each other.
  4. We are all God’s creation.  No one person is more important than another.  So, everyone will be treated with respect.  Matthew 7:12 states, “So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.” (a.k.a. The Golden Rule)

    My students will respect each other.  No questions asked.  And I teach them that respect can’t be demanded; it must be earned, and in order to earn it, they must give it.

    As an addition to respecting each other…

  5. The leadership.
  6. This is an extension to #2.  Who are the leadership?  They are any people in a leadership role, such as: pastors, deacons, helps, church board, etc.  It doesn’t matter if a leader isn’t a part of the youth ministry.  For simply being a leader, they will be respected as such.

    Also, the youth are taught that if they are told or asked to do something, then do it.  A true christian leader won’t ask anyone to do something the leader won’t do or that will bring harm.

  7. The facility.
  8. This includes the church building, the church yard, and any materials that belong to the ministry.  These things need to be taken care of, otherwise, it will eventually fall apart or be taken away.

  9. Yourself.
  10. Teach the students to respect themselves.  If they don’t, then no one else will.  As mentioned in rule #2, no one person is more important than another.  God created us all, and that makes each student important and very special.

Consequences

Simply put, if the students cannot be respectful, then they are asked to hit the road (lovingly).  This includes small groups, classes, events, and trips.   Otherwise, the youth ministry doors are always open.  Everyone who shows up to youth group is to find an enjoyable and safe place where they are accepted and want to return.

All enforcement is done by Bridgett and me, and backed by our Lead Pastors.

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