Recent Radio Interview

 —  August 31, 2010 — Leave a comment

Yesterday I was on an hour long live radio show with Faith Radio in Saint Paul, Minnesota. We talked about the book I wrote with Reggie and Abbie called, The Slow Fade. They asked me a bunch of questions, people called in and sent emails to ask questions. If you’re interested in listening to that interview via podcast, click here.

Every so often we take a question, perhaps from the Simply Youth Ministry Podcast, and pose it to you to answer instead of our panel. Here’s a great one that came in – if you have some wisdom I hope you’ll share!

I’ve been looking for ways to connect with our local school districts that are appropriate as a church worker and not offensive, ways to let them know we care about the students and are willing to help in any way that we can. Any suggestions you have in this area would be greatly appreciated.

Now – weigh in!


Are you ready?

 —  August 31, 2010 — 3 Comments

Tomorrow is Sept 1st and if you’re up-to-date, here’s what you should have already done, copied, distributed and checked off as a fait accompli (means its done).

Today’s To-Do List:

1) Your fall calendar through 12/31/10 is done. Everyone has a copy and its also been posted electronically on FB and the church website.

2) All reservations have been made like if you’re doing a fall retreat or going horseback riding. Whatever – you’ve? called the place and booked your group for the date needed.

3) Your volunteers are a done deal. In fact, you’ve based the number of kids? you can take on the number of volunteers you’ve enlisted to go on the fall trips.

4) Registrations/signups? have begun. You’re so far ahead of me that you’ve already passed out all the forms you need to your parents and you’ve posted signup lists. Even for the Youth Christmas Party on Sunday, 12/19. You’re that gooooood!

5) All church publications have received articles/info with details. I mean bulletin announcements, the newsletter, the little old man who’s doing the church website and the office admin has it ON the church calendar. Smooth. Nice way to beat the women’s group to the fellowship hall.

Gee, what are ya gonna do with yourself now that all of this is done? Oh yeah – hang out with kids and share your love for Jesus. You’re REALLY good.


PS-For those panicking right now, get to work. I’ll give ya a week to catch up.

For those of you saying, “She’s crazy; I’ll get to it later”? Too bad for you and your kids. Bet you’re always running into calendaring snafu’s with the church secretary and why oh why is the church van never available when you need it even tho you asked one whole day ahead of time?

Now Is The Time!

 —  August 31, 2010 — Leave a comment

If you’re a Youth Leader and you’re considering taking your group on a mission trip, now is the time to finalize those plans and make the decision about where your group will serve next year. But you might be saying to yourself, “Why now? It’s still the end of August. I’ve got plenty of time…”

But… you don’t. Many mission organizations are already finalizing their plans and participation for 2011. I know for us, Group Workcamps and Group Week of Hope, some of our most popular locations are already full. I have friends that work for other youth mission organizations and I know that they experience the same thing. We all have locations that “sell out” long before Thanksgiving.

And, it’s not just youth mission providers. Many missionaries and receiving ministries only have room for a certain number of people each year. Once those places are taken, they are “full.”

Please, if you want to get your students involved in a mission experience this summer, get going now. There are lots of folks to serve. Lots of needs to be met. Thanks in advance to reaching out to those in need.

Posted by Kurt Johnston

This past Sunday I visited one of our regional campuses to see their youth ministry in action. It’s something I try to find time to do on a semi-regular basis but in reality don’t end up doing as often as I would like, mostly because all three of our regional campuses are lead by incredible youth Pastors who don’t need me looking over their shoulders.

I was reminded of the power of healthy leadership yesterday when visiting our Irvine campus led by Leo Galarza. What I saw Sunday was really encouraging: The ministry recently split JH and HS into two separate groups and each is growing since the split, both bands were led by student leaders, volunteers were EVERYWHERE….teaching, running audio, greeting students, setting up and tearing down.

The whole thing was quite impressive, actually. And it was all because of Leo. but here’s the twist: Leo was nowhere to be found…in fact due to some family issues, Leo has been out of the country for almost THREE months!

Make no mistake, Leo is a strong leader and his presence is greatly missed….but his strength as a leader has been proven NOT by the fact that his presence is missed but by the fact that even though their leader is missed, nothing else about the youth ministry is missing at all!

For you to ponder:

- when you are going to be gone, how much work does it take for you to prepare everybody for your absence? The more you equip and empower others day-to-day, the more easily they can fill gaps left when you are away.


Interview with Francis Chan

 —  August 30, 2010 — 7 Comments

As many of you know Francis has made some big changes recently. Francis is a great friend and I have a ton of respect for him. He and his family were recently in Portland to hang out with us for a weekend and teach in my church, Colossae. We talked a lot about where he’s going next, but most of all it was just great to hang out, relax and laugh a bit. I’ve missed that the last couple years since I’ve moved.

Anyway, I just ran across this video interview (see below). He was interviewed by Mark Driscoll and Joshua Harris about his thought processes and what he’ll be doing next. It’s obvious that both Mark and Joshua have a ton of respect for Francis. However it doesn’t seem like they “get” him. In fact it seems like Mark thinks he’s a nutcase (in a fun, friendly way of course). Mark asks Francis some GREAT questions. It’s not necessarily that he disagrees with Francis…they’re just a bit baffled.

Fun to see a few guys who have a ton of respect for one another sit around and talk honestly.

Do you at all resonate with what Francis is saying? And, from what you see in your ministry to college aged people, do you think they resonate with Francis? If so, how?

Looking forward to your honest and uplifting thoughts here…

A strong testimony using during the LAUNCH series to help encourage student to see the importance of joining and HSM Life Group this fall.


This week’s question – have you had formal education in youth ministry? I’ve had a ton of on the job experience with 15 years and through a jillion events and conferences. You?