Monday, January 15, 2018

Prepare Your Staff For Success

One of the core values of Camp Hope is youth leadership. Youth know when they are simply there to help out and when they are truly entrusted with real ministry responsibility. Think about how you are equipping and empowering youth to be true leaders. Here are some things that you should think about having in place for growing your youth as leaders.

1. TRAINING. In order to help youth grow as leaders, you will need to have them enter into training every year. This is something that Camp Hope requires every year. This isn't any different from other jobs youth and adults will have throughout their lives. Professionals know that in order to be successful, they must invest into their staff. Continuing education and training is key for any employee! Look at your options for Camp Hope Staff Training on our website.

2. STAFF APPLICATIONS. Filling out a written application is a great way to help youth learn how to apply for jobs in the future. It is also a great tool to help youth articulate their faith and self-awareness. Use the staff applications that we provide as a resource for you. (This is available on the Resources page once you're ordered your curriculum.) You may wish to add some questions of your own. Whatever you do, staff applications are a great way to help youth grow as leaders.

3. INTERVIEWS. The interview process is also vital in growing youth leaders. It teaches them how to interview for jobs in the future and gives them sense of self awareness. Many jobs ask the same basic questions such as "What are your strengths?" "Where do you need to grow?" ""Why do you want to be part of our team?" Use these basic interview questions to help youth think through things and to refine their answers for future job interviews. Talk to them about how they are dressed, if they are onetime, their body language and other things they should consider as they interview for future jobs.

Remember that families are making plans for the summer, so do this as early as possible. You should also start making a Supply List for Camp Hope and other summer ministries. Look through the curriculum and list items that you can collect from congregational members, get donations or need to purchase. It takes time to get things delivered if you are ordering things AND families need time to collect other needed supplies.

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Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Monthly Ministry Team Devotions - January

As leaders we are called to help others grow as leaders. How does one do this? There are techniques such as the Leadership Pipeline and using the Leadership Square. These are great tools for any leader to use with any age of a growing leader.

What I would like is for us to reflect each month on a different ways that we help others grow as leaders. These are not necessarily the techniques that we’ve outlined in the above resources. Instead they are roles that we play as leaders, ways in which we function in relationship to other growing leaders. These are:
  • Equip
  • Empower
  • Encourage
  • Engage
  • Embody
This month take some time to reflect and talk about how you EQUIP others as growing leaders.

1 Corinthians 12:4-11

Reflect and Discuss
Begin with silent reflection before discussing. This can be a moment of silence or a time for journaling. If the group jumps right into discussion, we are less likely to listen to others. We become preoccupied with what we are going to say and are not completely present as we listen to others that are sharing. By taking some time to personally reflect, we can focus on hearing what others are sharing.

Afterwards, engage in a group discussion with these following questions.
  • What jumps out at you from this reading?
  • Does everyone have the same gifts? Why or why not?
  • How has God equipped you as a leader? 
  • How is using your gifts to equip another as a leader impact you personally? What benefit is it to you? To the community?

Put it into Action
How can we equip others for ministry?
  • How are we going to train our staff for Camp Hope? What staff training option is best for our group?
  • From our experience in the past, is there something specific that we can do to better equip our staff this year?
  • What do adult mentors need in order to be successful?
  • Are there other skills or individuals that we as a team need in order to help equip others for Camp Hope?

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Monday, December 18, 2017

Plan Your Staff Training

Equipping others for ministry is essential! We strongly believe that we should all continue to grow as leaders and here is how you can help you students grow in their leadership gifts. Our website has free resources to help you grow youth as leaders

If you are having Camp Hope this summer, you will need to have your entire staff go through staff training EVERY year to help them grow in their leadership gifts. Choose one of the staff training opportunities on our website.

When you register for your staff training, you will be adding in your curriculum at the same time so you can gain access to this year's promotional materials and other resources for THE GREAT ADVENTURE! 

You can pay online or make your check payable to: LEAD and mail them to:

ATTN: Camp Hope Ministries
TX-LA Gulf Coast Synod, ELCA
12941 North Freeway
Houston, TX 77060-1239

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Monday, December 4, 2017

Why Mentors Matter

This is also a time that you can be recruiting Adult Mentors. Remember that Camp Hope is a cross-generational ministry. Every staff member should have an Adult Mentor. It is vital for their success and faith formation.

Barna Research tells us, “Seven out of 10 Millennials who dropped out of church did not have a close friendship with an adult and nearly nine out of ten never had a mentor at the church.” They continue by saying, “The implication is that huge proportions of churchgoing teenagers do not feel relationally accepted in church.” You can read more HERE

So you can see that adult mentors make a HUGE impact in your church and your youth ministry. What do Mentors do? You can find out more about Adult Mentors HERE

Share with us on social media how you use mentors at your camp hope!

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Monday, November 27, 2017

Building a Ministry Team

It is time to launch your 2018 Ministry Team to grow as many leaders a possible through Camp Hope next summer. We know that the strongest, most impactful Camp Hope Ministries start with a dedicated team of adults who are committed to Camp Hope as a form of leadership development and outreach to the community.

Why a Ministry Team? Isn't it easier just to do it myself? Well, just as the varying parts of the human body need each other to best accomplish its work, so the Body of Christ needs to function interdependently, like a team. (Rom. 12:4-8; 1 Cor. 12:12-27). God so designed the Church that it "grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work" (Eph. 4:16).

By following God's design for a team ministry you will:
  • Come together or affirm and encourage one another
  • Accomplish more than working alone, both quantity and quality 
  • Make sure everyone is staying on track when getting ready
  • Provides a safety net so details don't slip through the crack 
  • Have varying perspectives helps everyone see the big picture more clearly 
  • Opens you up to being led by the Spirit as you work as a team
  • Promotes leadership growth in your adult leaders
  • Ensures that the ministry continues on if a key leader moves on from the church
Find out more information on Building a Ministry Team

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Monday, November 13, 2017

Keys to Success

How can you be successful in ministry? You equip, empower and encourage other youth & adults to do ministry. Over and over we have found that congregations that rely on one or two key adults to make ministry happen are handicapped. Once the key leader leaves, everything falls apart. For Camp Hope, we grow a Ministry Team of 4-12 leaders who share the responsibility to make this ministry happen. You can use this for your Camp Hope and other ministry planning. Review the "Building a Ministry Team" from our website and plan to meet every month starting in January.

As you plan for ministry events, it's always a good idea to have a master plan for when you need to get things done. For those doing Camp Hope, there is a tool called the “Timeline Checklist” to help you prepare for the summer. If you are new congregation, it is time for you to ensure that the pastor and congregation council fully understands and promotes this ministry. Then help parents and the congregation to understand the values of Camp Hope and how this will impact your congregation and your community.

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Monday, November 6, 2017

Camp Hope 2018 Theme is out!

This summer set out on THE GREAT ADVENTURE! Week one you will Set Your Compass and finding out how to stay on course on an adventure. Then you will Pack Your Bags and walk with Jesus to learn and grow. Then you will Start YOUR Adventure in week three learning how each day is a GREAT ADVENTURE.

Weekly Themes:

  • Set Your Compass. This week we will follow Biblical characters and find out how they stayed on course for this Great Adventure!
  • Pack Your Bags. Life is filled with choices. This week we will walk with Jesus as he teaches us that there are important decisions to make about who we should be as people of God.
  • Start YOUR Adventure. An adventure is filled with excitement but it rarely turns out the way we plan. This week of Camp Hope we will see how things can change along the journey.

Since one of our core values is growing youth as leaders, training and curriculum go hand in hand. Register for your staff training and get curriculum and other resources, such as publicity and registration forms, at the same time.

Click HERE for your staff training options and registration.

Click HERE to access 2018 THE GREAT ADVENTURE

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