It was the end of the night, and I was talking to some of my new volunteers. I asked them, “How did it go?”, one of them replied, “It was great,…
Make Serving In Your Ministry Easier
"I don't think I'll be able to serve next year." It wasn't the first time I had heard that comment, and as sad as I felt, it's not uncommon for people to step away from serving. Still, I had to ask why they needed to leave, and her response floored me. "I haven't been able to attend Mass with my family," I affirmed her decision and told my volunteer that it was the right choice. Family and faith come before serving in the ministry.
While I knew it was the correct decision, I couldn't help but wonder what I could have done to ease her burden. Sometimes, the biggest obstacles to people serving in your ministry are the systems and structures you have in place. While you can't meet everyone's needs, there are actions we can take to lighten a volunteer's load, such as:
PROVIDING YOUR TEAM WITH CLEAR ROLES
If your team arrives each week uncertain about their expected tasks, they will become frustrated. As a leader, you must offer clarity, and that stems from providing job descriptions, setting goals, and communicating the vision.
Ensure that you allocate time to share and review these elements with your volunteers. Inform them about their responsibilities by the end of the day. Help them visualize what success looks like and witness transformative experiences. When your team understands the WHY behind their roles, they can shape their expectations and prepare effectively.
REMOVING OBSTACLES TO SHOWING UP
Your volunteers make sacrifices to attend. If your program takes place in the evening, they likely rush through dinner. If your ministers have children and require childcare, they probably struggle to find coverage. You can alleviate these burdens by offering food and daycare services.
To acknowledge these obstacles, you should inquire about the challenges they encounter while serving in your ministry. Assemble a small team or request assistance from colleagues to address each situation, ensuring your team doesn't feel conflicted or overwhelmed by the sacrifices they make each time they serve.
LIFTING UP YOUR TEAM'S ACHIEVEMENTS
Your volunteers are juggling many responsibilities while investing significantly in your ministry. How frequently do you invest back in them? Celebrating life's moments with your team demonstrates their importance and expresses your gratitude for their contributions to the ministry.
Whether your team is marking a milestone, such as a graduation, or excelling in their roles, ensure that you shine a light on their accomplishments. Your appreciation could be conveyed through a thoughtful gesture, like a gift card to their favorite restaurant, or a recognition in the weekly newsletter. Regardless of your approach, make it personal and distinctive.
WALKING WITH YOUR CATECHIST IN FAITH
Enduring the marathon that ministry presents requires a strong team. Investing in their growth as disciples of Jesus Christ is vital for their longevity. Ensuring their faith development by praying alongside them and offering resources is essential.
Arrange an annual retreat, come together for worship nights, and provide materials to facilitate their focus on Christ. The more they invest in their relationship with Jesus Christ, the more effectively they will walk alongside others.
As you provide clarity, eliminate obstacles, celebrate their victories, and foster their discipleship, you'll witness your team's confidence soar. Your volunteers will eagerly serve and learn how to confront the challenges thrown by the evil one. With a team skilled in navigating the highs and lows of ministry, you'll enhance retention and cultivate a healthier culture for the entire ministry.