Here is this week's Thursday Thirteen, about the youth ministry where I work.
1. It's in a separate building from the main church. I make several trips a day. Rain, snow, sleet or hail, this office lady gets the mail.
2. I have great hours, 9 AM to 2 PM M-F.
3. We have a head youth pastor, from Abilene, TX. He came here as an intern 7 years ago and never left. He married a local girl. Most of the time he talks like us, but occasionally, when he gets really excited about something, he starts speaking "Abilenian." ("Y'all.")
4. One of our former students, a recent BSU grad, is an associate pastor who works on various and sundry things, but focuses on connecting our ministry with the local high schools. He also teaches the Wednesday night high school discipleship program "Fuel." BTW, I went to school with his dad from elementary through high school.
5. A lady with extensive background in youth ministry is another associate who focuses on middle schoolers (Spark), but does all of the food ordering and other planning for special events. Humongous tasks. She is the only one on staff besides me with a family. Everyone just has dogs, but we think that will change soon.
6.. We just hired a young lady with a master's degree in Digital Storytelling to help with videos and any other communication type things. She is amazing.
7. We have a high school senior on staff who is here in the afternoons, evenings, etc. who is in charge of "Operations," that is, renting out our inflatable games, keeping things fixed, locked, cleaned, etc. He is a big ol' burly sweetheart.
8. Sunday night, we are hosting one of our biggest events of the year called "Unmasked," sort of our response to kids' NEED for Halloween and candy. The focus is on being real (removing the mask that you wear because others expect you to be a certain way) and being who God created you to be. We will have all kinds of big bells and whistles that night.
9. Every Monday morning when I walk in before anyone else gets there (they've been there late Sunday night) the whole building smells like pizza. It smells SO good.
10. Our building (about 38,000 sq. ft.) is used for lots of things at our church, like women's Bible studies, men's studies, etc. Sometimes schools rent it out for "after-prom" celebrations.
11. We have about 350 on an average Sunday night. That fluctuates at different times of the year, up in the fall, down at Christmas, back up and then down during summer.
12. We have group of high school student apprentices who come in and work like little elves to help with mailings or whatever else we can give them to do.
13. Students' hearts and lives are truly being touched and changed. The staff feels very blessed to have an up-front seat and see what God is doing in East Central Indiana. Pray for the youth of today. What they deal with daily is stunningly sad and challenging. But God is good, and he has a better plan for their lives. That is our message.
Click on side 2 of the post card if you'd like to read the details: