To provide a weekly Sunday evening program for Jr. High and High School students, College Park Student Ministries is transitioning to Sunday night programming in the fall of 2020. Jr. High Ministry will meet at 4 p.m. and High School Ministry will meet at 6 p.m. Both groups will meet at the Ministry Center. Please review the following FAQ for a more detailed explanation of this change.
1. In a time when students are heavily influenced by culture and are leaving the church, why have less programming rather than more?
It is true that culture has a strong influence on students and that a high percentage of them leave the church. These facts impact everything we do as a ministry. However, history has shown that more programming isn’t the solution. Despite churches implementing a high level of programming over the years, dropout rates have not declined.
The solution to this problem is not more programming but increased creativity and intentionality. The main determinant of whether a student follows Christ after high school is their involvement in church services on Sunday mornings. The issue we currently face is that students are not attending Sunday service, and we believe that encouraging students to participate in service on Sunday is one of the most important steps we can take.
2. What will junior high students do if their parents serve on Sunday mornings in addition to attending service?
High school students experience this already. Many serve alongside their parents or choose to serve in a different area. Both Guest Services and Preschool are excited to have more students join their volunteer teams
In the fall, the College Park Institute will offer a series of Equip classes on Sunday mornings that are designed to be multi-generational. Students will be welcome to attend and to learn alongside adults.
3. Will Student Ministries programming still meet on Sundays when we have Worship-Based Prayer Night?
On Worship-Based Prayer Nights, Student Ministries programming will continue. However, we will cancel programming for the quarterly Congregational Meetings so that our volunteer leaders can attend and so that students can experience congregational life. On those dates, we will hold a social gathering following the Congregational Meeting.
4. How should parents who have both junior high and high school students handle transportation since the groups meet at different times on Sunday evenings?
If you live close, driving back and forth for each student might be an option. However, for students who need to stay for both groups due to transportation arrangements, there are a few options. First, there are several Student Ministries volunteer roles they can serve in while not participating in their own program. They will also have the opportunity to write cards to widows and serve in other Compassion Ministries activities. Additionally, we will provide a designated study and homework room for students that will be supervised.
5. What about the families who reserve Sunday evening for family time?
We understand this might be a tension for some families. No program schedule is perfect for everyone. Even our current programming schedule limits some students from participating. Our hope is for as many students as possible to be involved in our ministry, and given the various factors, we believe Sunday evening is our best option.
Learn more about Student Ministries at yourchurch.com/students.