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September 19, 2018

A Shift Toward Strategic Student Ministry

By New Churches Team

A Shift Toward Strategic Student Ministry

Over the course of the last 20 years, many churches have shifted from an attractional student ministry approach built on hype and fun to an approach that is more intentionally strategic in its discipleship focus. The question every student ministry must answer is, “How do we do something meaningful with students during their time with us that moves them through the discipleship process and equips them to be lifelong followers of Jesus?”

At the core of this discussion are questions of evangelism and discipleship. When do we present the gospel? How do we present the gospel? Should we give an invitation? How do we disciple students? The best and healthiest student ministries blend an attentiveness to engaging the students in the community in which they live while also walking with their students through discipleship.

Connecting Students with Life in the Church After Youth Group

If the goal of student ministry is to make lifelong disciples of Jesus, recent research illustrates a troubling reality: 66 percent of students that were active in church during high school are no longer active in the local church. The challenge of this common disconnect between faith in high school and faith in college confronts all student ministries.

Every student ministry must begin with the end in mind by considering how they can intentionally and strategically build their ministry toward creating life-long disciples. Ben offers three points of focus toward achieving this goal.

  1. Connect students in relationship with godly adults.

Recent research shows that high school students who have three or more spiritual influences in their lives during their high school years are three times more likely to stay connected to the local church after high school. The key to lifelong connection for many students with the local church is their connection to godly, caring adults. The most natural pathway to this relational connection is through small group ministry. In the context of a small group, students can have theological discussions, share life, and build relationships with men and women further down the path of walking with Jesus.

To read the rest of the article, and to watch the entire video training, click here for the full videos and post.

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New Churches Team

NewChurches.com wants to help you build a strong foundation by connecting you with top experts in the field of church planting and multisite ministry, and by regularly providing you with the resources, information, and community you need to thrive as you multiply the mission of Matthew 28.


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