If I Were Starting Youth Ministry Today…

It is hard to believe that I have been working in Youth Ministry for almost 10 years (That is about 1/3 of my life)!thought

I am seeing people that were my former youth group kids that are now entering ministry and leading youth groups themselves and former youth volunteers taking the leap to lead the youth group at their church. I never saw myself as a mentor, but I gladly answered any questions, or help with resources where I could along the way. I still do that.

This weekend, I was talking with one of my former helpers who is now leading the youth group in the town he has moved to. We discussed resources and practices. I gave him suggestions from the point of “If I were starting youth ministry today, what would be the most helpful resources?”

Here are my two lists. One is free resources, the other is not.
Free Resources For Youth Ministry:

1. Life in Student Ministry’s Freebie Friday has a lot of good free resources.
2. Open.Lifechurch.TV has some great series ideas, outlines, and video resources.
3. Youthministry.com’s freebie library
4. For Games, egadideas.com is a great place to get ideas
5. The Free Page at Dare2Share.org has a ton of great ideas, studies, and training material.
6. If your youth group has to do fundraising to make the budget work, I cannot recommend Celebrating Home highly enough – They are a Christian-owned company and you get zero runaround. My wife is a Designer for them and I have “seen operation from the inside”. They have some very good fundraising programs.
7. Morethandodgeball.com is a great site that both has tips and random goofiness (which is occasionally needed in ministry…)

The Not Free List: Some are cheap, some are not…

1. Simply Youth Ministry – They produce some great resources, especially for small groups.
2. Basic Theology by Charles Ryrie
3. Your First Two Years in Youth Ministry by Doug Fields
4. Dare2Share: A Field Guide for Sharing Your Faith by Greg Stier
5. Ministry Mutiny by Greg Stier
6. One or more trips to Group’s SYMC Conference
7. Battle Cry for a Generation by Ron Luce (This has some very good Culture and Media Stats)
8. New Testament History : A Narrative Account by Ben Wintherington III
9. A subscription to Interlinc. They have been providing good music and resources to Youth Leaders for a very long time…

What would you add? I’d love for this to be a growing list that can truly bless New Youth Leaders…

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