It’s been a week of examining all the options we’ve got in college ministry – and arguing that very few methods within our field qualify as true “Best Practices” (that argument begins here). For instance, I pointed out forty-nine decisions you’ve made about your college ministry’s Large Group Meeting… and then said that only five or six of those would be things pan-contextual enough to be – perhaps – considered “Best Practices.”
Of course, it’s likely your list would look different than mine. But I’d still like to share the Best Practices I’d pull from that list of forty-nine decisions. And as this week’s Frideas, perhaps you’ll find something worth adding to your quiver!
The Start: decisions 5 and 6
That’s right: Not until I reach the fifteenth decision in the list do I discover a potential Best Practice. Personally, I believe Large Group Meetings generally need a systematic method for greeting visitors. It’s got to be on-purpose… and it’s got to be purposeful; that is, the efforts should result in visitors actually feeling welcomed.
Surprisingly enough, I also believe that nametags are one of the unsung Best Practices in college ministry. Plenty of Large Group Meetings around the country already make use of them, and I simply find the upsides far more compelling than the downsides. (See a quick synopsis of the argument here.)
The Music: decisions 6 and 7
I’m personally a big fan of a high spiritual bar for leadership, including worship leaders. While I recognize that there is clear division on this one within the field of collegiate ministry, I’d go to bat for this as a Best Practice.
Decision 7 under the Music portion of that list asks, “What is the song choice based on?” While I don’t feel that every song has to line up with that night’s theme, I would say that every song should be purposeful, a la Backwards College Ministry.
The Message: decision 2
Again, I defer to Backwards College Ministry and would urge message topics or passages be tailored to purposes. And nope, that doesn’t rule out expository / non-topical messages, which (like any method) can be the perfect fit for certain purposes.
The After: decision 4
It just seems like a missed opportunity not to have anything that offers students a next step, a way to invite friends, a chance to plug in deeper, etc. So I’d probably vote for providing sign-ups and advertisements as a Best Practice. It may be a little boring (and extremely common), but it seems wise!
so what about you?
Anything on that list you think can be answered with another Best Practice? And any of these you feel don’t really reach that high bar?