How to keep a Youth Minister /Pastor /Director

by jpserrano on November 18, 2011 · 3 comments

Here is my top 15 things a church can do to keep their youth worker.

  1. Pay well.  A first year youth worker in a church should earn the starting salary of a first year teacher in the area.
  2. Give vacations.  At least 3 weeks a year and 4 Sundays.
  3. Give “comp time.”  If they worked 50 hours one week, let them take 10 hours off the next week.
  4. Do not expect the spouse to work in the Youth Ministry.  Your paying for 1 person.
  5. Sundays are work hours too.
  6. Overnighters should be included in comp time (including the time they’re asleep).
  7. Require time doing nothing but being silent, in prayer, and reading scripture.  Spiritual Disciplines should be a part of the job description.
  8. Don’t expect to see them much in the office.  They should be doing a lot of stuff away from the office.  Unless the office is a spot a lot of youth come to.
  9. Don’t micromanage the ministry.  Encourage, support, advise but give freedom.
  10. Give permission to fail.
  11. Judge the ministry based on quality of ministry not the quantity of youth.
  12. Invite them over for dinner.
  13. Watch their children so they can go out on a date.
  14. Make them accountable to the senior pastor not the church board.
  15. Be clear on expectations.  Have them in writing.

(Like any blog, it doesn’t go well if it is only one sided.  Please add your own to the list in the comments)

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

jpserrano November 18, 2011 at 5:56 am

From Kirsten- Be open when their kiddos need to go on trips.


Tom Vaughn November 18, 2011 at 7:45 am

3 weeks vacations? What? That is already covered with Junior High Camp, Senior Camp,Family Camp…and maybe even Winter Camp and Spring Break Mission trip!
What more do you want???
A. Senior Pastor/ Leadership PROMOTE the Youth Minister, the Youth Ministry Team and Youth Ministry Program and Events
B. Budget for training of Youth Minister and Youth Ministry Team, as well as resource materials/ trips/ events
C. Create generous expense line for Youth Minister for sodas/ burgers/ feeds at the house/ ice cream etc. necessary as part of meeting up with youth.
D. Bless the Youth Minister and spouse with regular love gifts/ birthday / anniversary cash bonuses, etc.
E. Encourage youth to participate in the life and missions/ ministry of the churh…even organizing and leading the events.
F. Give cost of living raises AND merit increases in pay at the SAME TIME.


Brenda Bos November 18, 2011 at 4:01 pm

Treat the youth program as a vital, critical program of the church, rather than an “add-on”. Strategize the education and social life of the youth to produce the next generation within the church. Include youth director in major church decisions. I guess what I’m saying is integrate! And I really appreciate your wanting spiritual disciplines to be in the job description.



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