A (mini) rant from a longtime youth minister

“I mean, come on. Can’t someone intervene? A youth leader from a small church shared this sentiment with me recently, lamenting the lack of volunteerism. Not for mission travel or for summer camp chaperones. Not for VBS. No, not for a major request like that.

Instead, they were simply looking for drivers to take the 17-member church youth mission team… to a bus stop in the nearby town. It would have taken about 75 minutes round trip with four or five vehicles and drivers. However, the volunteers did not mobilize. Come on, really?

The lack of volunteerism is a struggle everywhere. I understand. People are busy, but who isn’t? And I know there’s a flip side: churches don’t always do their part and don’t always give caregivers what they need to be successful.

But recruiting volunteers shouldn’t be so difficult! Allow me to rant a bit. In the process, you may discover strategies to address your own volunteer shortage.

Lack of Volunteering: Excuses You Might Hear

If I hear the following things again, I can shout:

1. “I can’t volunteer to teach Sunday School. I would never give up my own Sunday school class.

There may be another way of looking at things. If you want this class of adults to continue to thrive, it might be worth the investment. Make sure Sunday School and adult classes are still there in your church 10 years from now by helping now. Even helping out once a month will mean you’ll be in your class three times a month.

2. “I’ve done my time. My children are grown. I have to step aside and “let” someone else have their turn.

So church members in their 50s and older are exempt? When their children graduate from high school, do parents have to hand in their attendance card? The opposite is true. When our children are older, it’s even better for us to do our part. We have the privilege of transmitting the torch of Christ!

Of course, we are not as young as before. But we are smarter than before. Of course we are tired. But we didn’t chase toddlers all day or run the neighborhood taxi service.

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