Juggling Sheep
Welcome to Juggling Sheep, Jay Perry's blog about time management and personal productivity for pastors. Learn to balance work, life, family, and personal spirituality.

Share your best practices, tips and tricks, processes, sermon planning ideas, and resources. Feel free to email me: jaylperry[at]gmail[dot]com.

Friday, June 12, 2009

How to Start New Ministries

We all want church members to find their spiritual gifts, their passions, and their place in building God's kingdom and reaching the community. Or do we?

If we really want these things to happen, we need a process (or processes) for making them happen. If the members have the "what" and "why," we should readily give them the "how."

Let's say a church member comes up to you and tells you God has given them a "burden" for a new ministry for the youth of the community. And the more you listen, the more you think this ministry would actually be valuable to the community. And then you start thinking that it could mesh very well with your church vision.

Do you have a process to empower this person? Do all the members know (or have access to) that process? They should.

Here's just a sample process for how to start new ministries:

How to Start New Ministries

Because the church is the Body of Christ, each member is interdependent. No one should try to start a church-based ministry without (or in spite of) church support.

At each step of the way, you'll need to find support and buy-in:
  1. be clear on the community need and your spiritual gifts
  2. talk to your pastor about your ministry vision
  3. ask your pastor if it fits the vision of the church
  4. find at least one potential ministry partner
  5. write out a proposal, including...
    • ministry need and vision
    • who would do what (spiritual gifts, roles)
    • who would this ministry report to?
    • resources (time and money) required
    • how/when could it become self-sustaining?
    • start-up timeline
  6. show your plan to your pastor
  7. ask for your plan to go to the church board
  8. church board would give final approval (or disapproval)
  9. be willing to try hard and fail a lot
My advice is to print this up on a brightly-colored piece of paper and put it on bulletin boards, in the literature racks, and in every ministry process playbook (you use playbooks, right?).

Once people know they're allowed to start new ministries, they might actually try. And someone might be successful. You may have the birth of a new leader. And the world might be changed for Christ.