Using Gen Z’s habits for Ministry

Joe Terry is the assistant pastor at Circle Drive Alliance Church. Joe shares his tips on using Gen Z’s habits to grow their faith and how you need to give Kids Min leaders a say in executive decisions in order to make the best ministry choices.

Chris Holland
June 2, 2021
Kids Ministry Leadership

Is screen time all that bad?

When we think of Gen Z, the stereotypical image of kids staring at their iPhones comes to mind. Is this really a bad thing though? If they’ve got their eyes on social media, that is more time for them to be reminded of your church.

Time Limit vs. No Limit mindset for marketing

You can also show potential church visitors the fellowship they will experience if they choose to come to your church. In his post on Marketing for Ministry, Bobby Ikebudu outlines how you can make a “Welcome loop” video to show fellowship:

“A picture says a thousand words, so why don’t you show people how welcome they are rather than just saying it? Once you’ve picked a positioning statement, you can put it over a “Welcome Loop” video. The Welcome Loop consists of footage filmed at your church to show a new guest what they will experience. It is important that the welcome loop starts from the outside, and follows a guest’s experience into your church.”

Here are key pieces of footage for the welcome loop:

  • An outside view of your church (you could take this video driving around the parking lot or by flying a drone by your building)
  • Greeters welcoming families and single guests
  • People socializing at the coffee roasters / lobby
  • Worship, views of the audience and the stage
  • Kids having fun in Kids Ministry
  • The pastor mid-sermon
  • More socialization / fellowship

For younger kids, they love watching videos, showing them quality content that they will like. This brings up the next key way to engage Generation Z in Ministry: by giving them memorable content.

What gets repeated get remembered

The catchiest songs have one thing in common: Repetitive lyrics. In Bruno Mars' “Uptown Funk”: “Don’t believe me just watch” is repeated 18 times and "Uptown funk gon’ give it to you” is repeated 26 times (Shoutout to Gaetano Nino Di’Nardi for sharing this with me :-)

Uptown Funk by Bruno Mars

Joe uses Orange curriculum because it repeats key concepts in church and at home. When your kids / youth are repeatedly discussing a lesson and it’s key takeaways, they will remember the importance of it.

Invest in Budget for more than just goldfish

Doing quality ministry requires investing quality resources. The results of something are going to be proportionate to the effort invested. Joe leverages his role as assistant pastor to make sure Kids Ministry gets the funds, time, and people it needs to accomplish its mission. If you want to truly engage the next generation in Ministry, you’ll need to invest in the three T’s:

Teaching- Are you using lessons that Kids will both enjoy and remember?

Team- Do you have enough Kids Min staff and volunteer coverage? Does your Kids Min director have real influence in church decisions?

Tech- Do you have the right tools to train volunteers, present curriculum, and keep in touch with parents?

Evaluate changes: Did this help or hurt us?

Using data to make decision

Joe recently switched his curriculum to Orange. He also switched his presentation software from powerpoints to Playlister. But it’s not sufficient to just make a change and forget about it. A few months after these changes, Joe and his team collected data on how things are going:

“We surveyed our volunteers about if they preferred Playlister to PowerPoint, we discussed faith with parents after switching curriculums. This qualitative data lets us know if we made the right decision or if we should try something else.”

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