here are some recurring themes. I've chosen 5 of the most common to focus on as we start the year. Here is the second need.
2.. Connections with students.
College ministry can make you a bit sea sick at times. It's ebb and flow nature is unlike any other ministry in the church. Fortunately, as your ministry grows, the up and downs seem to become less noticeable. However, if you are just starting out and have a group of 20 that dwindles quickly to 5, it is easy to get discouraged. You should know that some of that is to be expected in college ministry. Students graduate, get new jobs, change relationships, and all of those things can affect their participation. Don't give up.
Your best connection with students is your connection to the youth ministry. Be sure that you have a good working relationship with the youth minister and youth leaders. Engage with high school juniors and seniors by serving at youth events, having college students serve in the youth ministry as needed. Plan some events with high school seniors during the year that help them build relationships and look forward to being a part of the college ministry.
Stay connected to students on your current college roster. Many students "fall away" from church after high school, even if they stay in the same community. Their traffic patterns and friendships change. It's easy for their priorities to shift. Staying in contact with them can make a difference. Send them a text, or mail them a note that says you are praying for them. Have students call them occasionally to let them know they haven't been forgotten. Make sure your contacts aren't just about their attendance. Let them know you care about them.
Connect with students on your local campus. What campus or campuses do most students attend in your area? Is there a campus close to your church? Does your local campus have a Baptist Student Ministry? Contact the BSM Director (click here to find a list) on your local campus to find out ways that you could partner to reach students. If there is no BSM, find out how your church could serve the campus and connect with students there. Need help? Contact Ginger Bowman - firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are so many students in your community that need Jesus and need a church. Work with your existing group of students to find ways to reach out to them. For more ideas check out the article Updating Your Contacts from a previous issue.
Is this in your top 5? Maybe you have one to add to the list? Share it with us here on our facebook page.