Archives For jon

Weekend Worship Review #5

Jon —  November 12, 2012 — 1 Comment

Sunday marked the second week of our All Out War series! I’m gonna keep this post brief because it’s a crazy busy week for me.

Gimme 5:

Yesterday we played Gimme 5. This is one of our students favorite challenges! We have all the students grouped at tables during our worship services, and this challenge pits tables against one another. Basically the host of our service, a volunteer named Michael Johns, calls out questions like, “Gimme 5 weapons of war,” or “Gimme 5 words that have to word WAR in them”. Students then work with their tables to write down 5 answers. As soon as they have 5 they have someone run that list across the room to me. The first 3 lists to make it to me are read off in order. We have a judge who has a buzzer determining if the answers are legitimate. You can purchase a Gimme 5 book by Les Christie here.

Here is a free graphic I created for Gimme 5. Enjoy.

Gimme Five


Weekend Worship Review #4

Jon —  November 9, 2012 — 2 Comments

A Topic Teaser video, Slide for Joust, and much more!

Continue Reading...

Weekend Worship Review #3

Jon —  October 29, 2012 — Leave a comment

Yesterday we wrapped up our 4 week series “How To Annoy Your Family.” I preached on making good choices from Psalm 1. We showed some hilarious videos, and had a student testimony about how God is teaching their family through adoption.

A Helpful Piece of Software:

A few years ago our youth ministry had a huge budget. In fact we had $20,000 budgeted just to spend on weekend worship services. This meant that we could spend close to $400 a week just on our weekly youth service. Since the fallout of 2008 our church had been weathering the storm pretty well. This past year has been tremendously difficult on our budget. However, the production value of our services has remained high, and our youth ministry is reaching more teens than ever! Since we can’t simply buy a new video to show in a service we have relied on creating our own, and using sites like YouTube. One of the handiest pieces of software out there is Youtube Downloader HD. This software allows us to rip videos that we have used in our services. For instance, each week we have music videos playing pre-service, and for the LEGO series we ripped 4-5 LEGO Stop Motion music videos and had them looping. Being able to rip videos has saved us loads of money. Just make sure you don’t rip videos that people sell as intellectual property.

If you would like a more detailed look at our service I have attached a copy of our cue sheet:

Cue Sheet 10/28/2012

As always, I would love to hear your thoughts on student ministry service design/programming. Share your thoughts/ideas with us in the comments below.

Weekend Worship Review #2

Jon —  October 23, 2012 — 1 Comment

This past Sunday marked week 3 of our series, “How To Annoy Your Family”. It’s a Doug Fields/Simply Youth Ministry series on family relationships.

What Worked:

For the past weeks we have had students on stage for interview style testimonies. We set up black leather club chairs and a coffee table on the side stage and feature the interviews as you would see on a late night tv show (Letterman, Conan). These interviews have been stellar. You can find the slide that we use for these interviews here.

We have students sit at table. We call it “doing church face to face.” At every table is an adult leader who gets a “Table Leader Card.” This card has a Table Talk activity and tips for our leaders. It’s a way to do training without doing training. Here is a sample:


What Sipped:

The team who used the worship room before us unplugged our linked hard-drive and no one thought to check everything out before the service started. The song had no lyrics. It was a huge reminder to never assume that everything is where it needs to be in a multi-purpose room.

Cue Sheet:

Cue Sheet October 21, 2012

If you all have any questions about our services/programming I always love chatting it up.

Weekend Worship Review #1

Jon —  October 15, 2012 — 1 Comment

Ok, I am totally ripping off Josh Griffin here! Just about every week Josh offers a weekend review of their youth services on his amazing blog, More Than Dodgeball. I check out his stuff all the time. In fact you will see some of it reproduced frequently if you came to our student services. I figured it might be helpful to show the world what a typical weekend looks like in our youth ministry. We currently see between 200-250 students in a given month at our youth ministry.

Each week I plan on posting the PDF cue sheet that we used in our weekend service. I will share a few comments on what worked and what (as Doug Fields says) sipped, then allow you all to ask questions. The key here is that I want to interact with you all. Let’s get crackin on developing better services together. So enough of this…


Date: October 14, 2012

Sermon Series: How to Annoy Your Family (A Doug Fields/Simply Sermon Series

Cue Sheet: Cue Sheet October 14, 2012

What Worked:

In our services we have student sit around tables, so each week we make sure that each Table Leader (adult volunteer) gives every student in the room a high five. Yesterday we added 6 more tables and had them all staffed. This fall has been a huge volunteer push for us (14 new volunteers so far). Students cheered as we introduced the new leaders. We want to make sure they are known as the heroes of our ministry.

Also, our student testimony for the week came from a young guy named Jorden. Jorden is hilarious (a real ladies man). He spoke of some of the struggles he faces as a single child in a racially diverse family. It was awesome!

What Sipped:

An hour before the service our lights on the trussing began to flicker. I had to swap out our DMX board and reprogram in a pinch. We still had some glitches. The bottom line is that you can always count on something screwing up so you had better be as prepared as possible. Had we not worked hard all week and waited til Sunday morning to run cable, setup ProPresenter etc. it would have been a disaster instead of a hiccup.

Let me hear your questions!

Pre-Service Slides

Jon —  October 13, 2012 — 4 Comments

Each week at our Sunday morning worship service we have slides that scroll during pre-service. Here are a few examples for you to use. In our ministry we constantly rip others off. I am not a graphic designer by any stretch so I have learned to imitate others. You will notice hat tips to YS! and Simply both. And on that topic, feel free to rip us off as well. This is about Jesus and his love for teens!

Welcome to DRIVEN Sneakers

A welcome slide of some sort is always in the mix. I recommend checking out Saddleback HSM’s facebook page regularly for ideas.

Everyone Has a Story

Everyone Has A Story is the title that Doug Fields used years ago to represent student testimonies. In our youth ministry we have developed a handbook/DVD combo that is free to students that helps them write out their own testimony and prepare to share it in our services. This is the slide we use when they are on stage.

Homestar Runner Slide

Lego Sermon Series

Among the slides that we have scrolling is usually a slide that tells students what the current sermon series is.

Small Group Couch

RAID Fall 2012 Slide

Superhero Dinner Theater

The 15 minutes before a service when students are milling around is a great time to promote things like small groups and special events.

Stache of the Month Beiber

Stache of the Month Queen

Stache of the Month Stewart

Well I hope this gave you all some sweet ideas!

Some slides are just for fun. Our recent Youth Ministry Magazine was dubbed the “Stache Issue” so we have been exploring all things stache.

If you plan a weekly worship service then you will want to check out Planning Center! It’s a worship planning, volunteer scheduling, media repository, emailing, texting machine! Here’s a quick video overview:

Forget printing cue sheets (aka Order of Worship), figuring out Microsoft Excel for band scheduling, or burning cds for your instrumentalists to listen to. Planning Center does it all! One of my favorite features of Planning Center is their FREE app. We have been using Planning Center for almost 2 years and love it! Here are two more videos. The first is a more detailed look at Planning Center’s in-depth features, while the second is about their iPad app called Music Stand (a virtual sheet music/band notes app).


Are there any go-to planning resources you use on a weekly basis? Share the wealth with the youth ministry world here!


Jon —  May 23, 2012 — Leave a comment

Yet another great app for iOS! I can see so many places to work this into student ministry. How would you use it?

Newsstand: Freebies

Jon —  May 21, 2012 — 1 Comment

Free Magazine Subscriptions in Newsstand!

Continue Reading...

Youth Ministry in 2042

Jon —  May 17, 2012 — Leave a comment

Youth Ministry Geek is dedicated to offering a glimpse into the ever progressing world of technology. How can we use technology to further the advance of the kingdom of Jesus in the lives of teenagers? That is the question we are asking, and writing about. However, this morning I was struck by front page article in The Washington Post that I was reading on my iPad. The headline read: Census: Minority babies are now majority in U.S. The article indicated that in July 2010 a “watershed moment” occurred in American history. A white population (babies) in America was officially eclipsed by a minority population. The article also argued that this eclipse would continue to accelerate until a point somewhere around 2042 when the nation will become a “majority-minority society.” In other words, minority groups will constitute the majority of the U.S. population. I encourage you to read the article for yourself, but for the moment let’s consider what this means for youth ministry in America.

In the next 30 years a dramatic shift will happen. “From a Christian perspective”, as Albert Mohler put it this morning in his podcast The Briefing, “this is a very important missiological insight.” In other words, the church in America must prepare herself for this shift and begin thinking through the questions that will define Christian ministry in the next 30 years. In the same way, youth ministers must begin acquainting themselves with this shift so that is does not take us by surprise. For the majority of it’s short history, youth ministry has prided itself with blazing methodological trails that the church has often followed. Now it is time for youth workers the begin thinking about the future of ministry demographics, and how we must adapt to reach this growing population. God is bringing the nations to us, and we must be prepared to accept them into a relationship that leads us in the gospel of Jesus.

As an East Coast, “Bible Belt”, Caucasian youth worker, here are some of the questions I am asking myself:

  • What are the cultural issues that concern the growing minority groups in America and how does the Gospel relate to/address those concerns?
  • What are the theological influences and trends in these minority groups, and how can I be prepared to have meaningful discussion about them?
  • How can I anticipate and implement the methodological changes required in becoming a multicultural youth pastor/youth ministry?
  • What part can technology play in bridging the gap between these cultures in the coming decades?

These are only a few of the big questions looming on the horizon of our youth ministry world. I would love to hear from youth pastors who are already working through these questions in their context. Hopefully we can continue the open dialogue that makes the youth ministry community so exciting to be a part of.