Over the past few weeks I have been really trying to figure out what I am going to be doing next after my current role at LeaderTreks ends in August. As I have started searching all over the web I have found tons of postings from churches saying they have jobs available. Now while I am looking at a wide range of job opportunities I am only going to be referring to one: Youth Pastor/Director positions.
I have probably read close to 100 job descriptions that are in search of a youth worker. After reading all of them & applying to only a few I have realized three reasons why a lot of churches need Bryan Allain's help. Bryan is a funny guy I just came across on Twitter & am now hooked on his blog. He combines great whit with honest truth & I think most youth ministry job seekers would appreciate his candor.
1. Be Realistic--Now I know in scripture Paul talks about being all things to all people (1 Cor 9:22), but I don't think he was using that in the context of trying to land his next gig. Churches, most of us looking at your jobs are in our mid to late 20s. It is ridiculous for you to ask for someone who has a masters, five years of youth ministry experience, tech-savvy, able to lead & develop a youth worship band, speak Spanish, oh and somehow be married with all the free time leftover from burying ourselves into the ground trying to do it all.
*helpful hint: we know you want someone who is going to be great for your students, so if you must list all the above requirements, add some humor to it (insert Bryan here).
2. Website--Good grief, whatever currency churches earned with me on their job description, many burned it up when I clicked on the link to go to their church website. If your website looks like it is from 1995 I'm going to assume you are a little old fashioned. Sure it would be nice to think "they are probably too busy in the community spreading the love of Jesus to update their website," but in reality it probably means they're thinking, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." Which probably means you want the youth ministry to be like it was in 1995.
*this is probably why you want your next youth worker to be tech-savvy isn't it?
**Elmbrook Church has pretty good website.
3. Expectations--To be honest, the relationship I have with my future Senior Pastor is the thing I am more worried about than anything else. So it often scares me when I read in these job descriptions that I am basically supposed to shut my mouth, get in line with all the other people at the church (staff & members), and do what he tells me. Chances are this guy is 15-20 years older than me. Chances are he has a lot of ministry & experiences under his belt. But if that just equates to entitlement for him, then I will pass. Tony Dungy mentors Mike Vick, & they weren't best buddies or a part of the same team. If you, Senior Pastor, can't promise me a relationship that goes beyond what my budget looks like & how many kids are coming then don't get mad at me when I have "WWEvangelism Night: Wrestling Your Way Through Life".
*if this describes your youth pastor/senior pastor relationship I suggest checking out The Disconnect by Doug Franklin.
What has been your experience with job searching and a church's requirements & expectations?