You’ve probably noticed the various ministries, church growth specialists, and spiritual experts seeking to help the local church through the COVID-19 crisis. For many unsuspecting church leaders, the coronavirus can feel like they are staring into the abyss of uncertainty, and who can blame them? It is an unsettling time, and our church leaders need all the prayers, advice and support that institutions can provide. As the Church grapples with leadership in a “social distancing” world, a largely untapped group of experts have been the young adults themselves. As the Church contemplates the benefits of going digital, how can young adults be enlisted to partner with pastors, elders and church members?
Now that the majority of collegians are staying home, how can their local church partner with them? I have listed my top five ways below:
- Reverse Mentoring: Reverse mentoring pairs young adults with seasoned church members, where the former is a mentor and the latter a mentee. Through reverse mentorship, young adults can provide strategic and culturally relevant insights within the digital space.
- Meaningful Relationships: Ask a young adult how they are maintaining meaningful relationships. With the loss of regular physical meeting spaces like Sabbath School, potlucks and social events, ask young adults how they have been able to maintain connections with their friends amid a pandemic.
- Outreach Opportunities: Young adults have thought of creative ways of serving the community. Medical students around the US are offering to babysit for hospital workers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic. Southern Adventist University’s School of Nursing donated supplies to area hospitals. How can young adults who are back home from campus partner with your church to serve the community?
- Online Giving: As the offering plate can no longer be passed down the aisle, young adults can help you setup an online giving platform. Sound complicated? For young adults, online giving is not a nuisance it’s a necessity.
- Blog Page: If you are a pastor or elder, do not throw last week’s sermon manuscript away; repurpose it. A young adult will be able to quickly setup a blog page for you so that those same sermons can be shared online.
This is not an exhaustive list, but it does highlight how important this generation is to the future success of the Church. . . We have some of the most gifted and spiritually receptive young adults you can find.
Paul wrote to Timothy, ” Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.” (1 Tim. 4:12-14). . .
I believe that young adults can collaborate with the Church in surprising and unprecedented ways.
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