best practices

20 07, 2020

Gap Year Options

By |2020-07-18T16:18:10-04:00July 20th, 2020|Alvin Lau, best practices|0 Comments

High school grads in the 2020 cohort will experience a summer and fall unlike previous generations of grads. Grads who are continuing to post-secondary studies will experience orientation events and the first weeks of classes (if they exist in person at all) in completely new ways. Some grads are deciding to defer their acceptances for a year. (Note: If you are looking to defer but haven’t done so already, you’ll need to check with your respective institution to see if any conditions apply to that deferral.) Other grads made the decision to defer a while ago.   If you

3 04, 2020

Navigating the Next Few Weeks

By |2020-04-03T15:00:22-04:00April 3rd, 2020|Alvin Lau, best practices|0 Comments

Things keep changing in light of COVID-19. Since March break, youth leaders have been triaging the situation while trying to maintain relational connections with students individually and collectively. What we originally thought would be 3 weeks off is turning into months (at least two since this started) and who knows? Things will look differenteven beyond that. So how do you support your youth at this time?   SCHOOL AT HOME There will need to be a resetting of boundaries and expectations, especially with schools initiating more formal online platforms. The average amount of

28 03, 2020

5 Tips For Tech in Ministry

By |2020-03-27T11:41:20-04:00March 28th, 2020|Alvin Lau, best practices|0 Comments

In the past couple weeks, many churches have started using technology (especially streaming and video conferencing) to meet and connect with one another. As this form of connection becomes more familiar to us, here are some tips, ideas and considerations moving forward.    DIFFERENT TOOLS FOR DIFFERENT AUDIENCES  No one tool will work for everyone, and different tools serve different purposes. Many churches are streaming their services through Facebook Live or YouTube Live. Zoom is the choice for many who need a group discussion setting. Instagram chats,

8 11, 2019

Collaboration

By |2019-11-08T15:35:57-05:00November 8th, 2019|Alvin Lau, best practices|0 Comments

In the last few months, I (Alvin) have had the honour of working alongside the Church Life team with the Small Church Envisioning days (the last session is this Saturday at Immanuel Baptist Church in Toronto). While there have been several inter-department collaborations in the past, this round reminded me of its importance. Here are a few insights. I can (and should) learn from others. Admittedly, I sometimes have a

4 11, 2019

Moving from Children’s Ministry to Youth Ministry

By |2019-11-04T09:49:53-05:00November 4th, 2019|best practices|0 Comments

Last Saturday, I had the privilege of attending parts of the Toronto Children’s Ministry Conference. (Tanya Yuen was one of the key organizers.) At face value, it may not make sense for the “youth guy” to be at a children’s ministry conference. However, strengthening a child’s move from children’s ministry to youth ministry is crucial. A few years ago, Tanya and I wrote a booklet called “Faith Formation in Children

25 10, 2019

What’s Happening on October 31?

By |2019-10-25T14:21:56-04:00October 25th, 2019|best practices|0 Comments

With October 31 approaching, many kids (and youth) are preparing for Halloween by getting costumes ready. Households are stocking up on treats. Whether or not you choose to participate in Halloween traditions, Halloween can be an opportunity for Christian ministry. Some churches decide to host events such as  fall fairs, which can be opportunities to offer safe gathering places for neighbourhood young people. The key for this option isn’t to

18 10, 2019

3-Tier Engagement

By |2019-10-18T15:44:12-04:00October 18th, 2019|best practices|0 Comments

Recently Matt, Meghan, and Alvin have been reassessing how we gauge our effectiveness with our CBOQ churches, specifically with youth ministries and their progressions. Through prayer and discussion, we’ve come up with a 3-tier engagement approach that will help us better evaluate our ministry. (Note: The tiers are not indicative of importance; they simply provide us with three different ways to measure engagement.) TIER 1 Every year, we will compile

5 09, 2019

Kick-off Tips

By |2019-09-05T15:49:29-04:00September 5th, 2019|Alvin Lau, best practices|0 Comments

Are you ready for another ministry year? Chances are, you’re preparing for that first kick-off event of the year (or maybe you’ve already done it). As you putting on the finishing touches, a few reminders to make this kick-off an effective one: Be mindful of the first impression. That first impression, especially for first-ever visitors, will leave a lingering memory (positive or negative) with your students (and their parents). This

24 05, 2019

Planning for Next Year

By |2019-05-24T13:09:13-04:00May 24th, 2019|Alvin Lau, best practices|0 Comments

You’ve got a few more weeks of youth group left before the summer season comes. For some of you, the summer brings rest and a break. Others of you switch into another gear. Either way, it’s important to plan long before September comes. Do you know what you’ll be doing next year? You may be asking, “Why am I already planning next year?” A few reasons: It gives you and

25 04, 2019

Volunteer Appreciation

By |2019-04-25T23:41:33-04:00April 25th, 2019|Alvin Lau, best practices|0 Comments

The ministry year is less than 2 months from finishing; youth ministries are making the final stretch and are starting to wrap things up. One key opportunity we urge you to take is to thank your volunteers. Here are some suggestions.   It’s Not One-Size-Fits-All In a previous blog post, we noted that different people receive appreciation differently. That being the case, now’s a great time to find ways to

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