Its almost Summertime! Warm weather. Sunshine. And No School for the students in your ministry. What a great opportunity to build relationships with as many of them as you can. Its also a great opportunity to pull of some epic events that will create memories for years to come. This toolbox is dedicated to helping you get the most out of summer.
Keep giving them opportunities to grow in their faith. Kids want to have fun during the summer, but that doesn't mean they don't also want to keep developing their relationship with Jesus, so make sure you don't just "take the summer off" from this side of your ministry. Do a couple of service projects. Sign up for a Mission Trip (I'm just saying that we do still have some spots in our first two sessions of Manus Christi). Go on a Steubenville Conference. Form a special Bible Study. Go on a day-long "pilgrimage" to a super-cool church. There are a ton of little ways to encourage their faith during the summer.
Fun Events to consider for the calendar. With the warm weather and longer daylight, summer is a great time to put together some fun events for your students...and its a great time to get them to invite their friends to your ministry who might just stick around during the year if you build that relationship while they are at the event. Here is a list of some fun possible events: https://lifeteen.com/cym/blog/my-youth-ministry-summer-bucket-list/
One of the favorite events I ever put together was "Gut-Buster-Pillow-Fight Night". We setup a progressive dinner of fast food restaurants and capped it off with a massive pillow fight back at the parish hall (or wherever you normally meet). Here is how we planned it out: 1. For the progressive dinner, plan out your "menu" and call ahead to the restaurants with the approximate time and number of what you'll need. For example, maybe you start with tacos from Taco Bell, move to fries from McDonalds, grab a drink from Sheetz, and for dessert...Frostys from Wendy's. Whatever works in your area. They will appreciate being able to plan ahead, or they may just tell you that they don't have the capacity to accommodate, but either way, calling ahead keeps you from having to figure things out on the fly. 2. Figure out what shenanigans you want to do along the way. Maybe you want to have a taco-eating contest. Or if you are going to Panda Express, maybe you could do some relay using chopsticks. Or maybe its something that is not based on food...like off-season Christmas Caroling to your Pastor at the Rectory. 3. Figure out Transportation. If you have enough to warrant it, renting a bus is a great way to go as it keeps the group together for fun on the go, but it can also totally work with parent drivers. 4. Find help. It will help you out immensely if you have one or two volunteer drivers that just go ahead of the bus or caravan to "grease the wheel" at each of the stops to work out last minute logistics and things can be ready for your arrival. 5. Take pictures. Or find a volunteer that will come with you to take pictures.
So there's a start for your summer planning. If you want more ideas, you are always welcome to give us a call and we will be happy to brainstorm with you.