For the last few years I’ve been blessed to share about college ministry at a locally hosted church workers/ministry leaders conference called BASS. I’ve lead a couple of different seminars on this topic, but the one that I do every year is about how to develop a college and young adult ministry in the local church.
I shared for this year’s BASS conference yesterday, and once again I found myself walking away with the same encouragement and excitement that I’ve gotten every year when sharing. Here’s a couple of reasons why I think this has been so fun for me:
- The folks that come are essentially dealing with the same problems I am. For the most part we have average size churches and are dealing with the various implications of doing college ministry in normal church contexts. This makes for great conversation!
- The conference is wonderfully diverse and I’ve found that diversity represented well in the seminars I’ve shared in. I’ve had lay people, senior pastors, youth pastors and parents in addition to all kinds of nationalities and ethnicities. It is really fun and interesting to connect with people doing college/young adult ministry in such diverse and different contexts.
- The main seminar I lead is literally packed every year that I do it. This year there were actually people sitting on the floor in the back. This is a testimony to how challenging this ministry continues to be for the majority of churches. People are trying to care for this generation of young people and are looking for resources.
- Overall, I’d say that the whole experience is about encouragement. I am encouraged, but I find that the participants are as well. One of the reasons that I continue to participate in BASS is to be an encouragement to others serving in this arena, hopefully blessing them and adding some validity to their work. This college ministry thing can be lonely and confusing.