There are several things that you want to consider when making a logo for your ministry.
3 Simple tips:
1. You want your logo to actually brand your ministry and tell what you are about in some way. When someone looks at your logo they should get some sort of image in their head that is inviting, yet intriguing.
2. You want your logo to be simple and not too busy.
3. You want to be able to add your logo to as many different things as possible and not have to make changes to it every time.
Lets take a look at the logo below and dissect it.
This image has been used in the past for our small groups that we called “connect groups”. You will also notice our youth ministry logo at the bottom “the outlet”.
This image is simple and not busy, it can be transferred onto any shirt color easily, colors can be changed quickly if need be, and I can resize to be smaller or bigger without losing quality. You will also notice that we put focus on the connect part by connecting the two words. We also tied it in with our brand and logo by adding the outlet plug in the letter “C”.
Your logo does not have to be some crazy design, with things exploding everywhere etc.. The best logos usually are just text with a good font and something designed into it that connects it with the idea of what your ministry is trying to accomplish. For us that idea is that we are constantly trying to plug people into the word of God, and connect people with other believers that can help motivate and keep each other accountable while empowering each other to reach out to the surrounding community.
You can see that idea in both of our logos above. We have “the outlet” which is what you plug your power cable’s into, and you have to connect to it to get power. Our “Connect Groups” has the power plug designed into it, as well as connecting the two words. When you see both of these images we are hoping that the positive image that comes into your head is connection and power source.
Adobe Illustrator is a must for me. If you do not have access to Adobe Illustrator you will want to have some sort of program that will allow you to save in a .ai or .eps file. If you cannot do that, please make your image as large as possible so that you can shrink it down without losing quality and have it big enough for shirts, posters, etc..
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If you’ve been putting out quality print media for your ministry, but you want to take it to the next level, this is for you. Printed materials that look great are awesome. Printed materials that look AND feel great are even better. Never underestimate the wow factor of a tactile experience when someone touches your card for the first time.
The Simply Youth Ministry Conference was fantastic. I know I said that I would blog every second of it, but I was completely naive of the mixture of exhaustion and rejuvenation I would be experiencing. There were so many things that rocked my world this weekend, and I’m excited to share them with you.
- I wasn’t able to attend a panel because the schedule could be hectic, especially if you like to eat once or twice a day.
- There were a lot of women at the conference, but very few on stage. A total of 4 women stepped onto that stage, including one of the musicians.
- The big-group sessions were super long. In their defense, they utilized that time well. But still, for me to stay in one place for 2 1/2 hours is a challenge.
- My hotel pillow smelled. I know that’s not SYMC’s fault. I’m just saying!
- There weren’t enough minorities represented, period. On stage, as teachers, and even in the crowd. I would love to see more of that.
- There was no urban ministry connect group. Or a pin for my I.D.
- Nobody wanted to find me and win free stuff from the YouthMin.Org Marketplace.
- No youth pastor is a rockstar. Whether you’re Josh Griffin or Kassy, this girl I met at Starbucks; we all have something to contribute to the Youth Ministry community. Also, those youth pastors who you may look at as a rockstar don’t look at themselves like a rockstar. They’re just as weird, love students just as much, and have just as many struggles as you do.
- We need to be more transparent with one another. We are in youth ministry together, and it’s about time we share burdens with one another and live in real community.
- A grimy penny is worth just as much as a shiny penny. That student who has a bunch of junk in their life and is a thorn in your side? God values him the same as that kid who is perfect. And God also values him the same as you.
- While some may plant and others may water, it is God who causes the growth. Yet, your responsibility may just be to ready the soil by chipping away at all the gravel and clumps it has gathered.
- Quit balancing, hiding, or trying to stir in your sins and burdens. Give them to God.
- Youth pastors are a lot like their youth. I saw a couple “comforting each other” during worship. Once the overwhelming B.O. (or maybe it was Axe?) singed my nose hairs. I saw “that guy” with the guitar. And there were people running around like cray cray.
- Don’t skip out on community at these conferences. Fight the urge to go to bed at 9. Stay out and learn from other youth pastors. Talk to the people in the elevator. Don’t not talk to someone just because their haircut is too cool for you or their blog is actually read.
What are some things that you learned? Pros? Cons? I would love to hear about them in the comments. If you blogged about SYMC, I encourage you to link it in the comments, as well!
Here’s a fun game we play with our Middle Schoolers quite a bit to get them out of their shell. We’ve never played it with our High Schoolers, but I know they would love it too.
Divide your group into two teams with an even number of students/leaders. Each team should stand in a straight line next to their own teammates, and facing the other team, which should be standing about 8 feet away. This is your gauntlet.
Now, one member of each team, from opposite ends of the gauntlet, will stand at their end of the gauntlet. When the Leader says go, these two must maintain eye contact and walk towards each others ends. When they meet halfway in the middle, they must look directly ahead and keep going to the end.
In the meantime, the players forming the gauntlet do anything and everything to make the opposing challenger laugh, smile, or break eye contact. Touching the challengers is forbidden, but almost anything else goes.
If a challenger successfully makes it through the gauntlet, they rejoin their team at the end of the line. If they lose eye contact, smile, or laugh, they join the opposing teams line.
The game is over when one team has been eliminated.
This game can serve two great purposes: 1) Helps get jokes, funny faces, all that fun distracting stuff out of the way in an appropriate manner before a lesson, and 2) can be used to set up a talk on Self Control.
Small groups are essential for a healthy ministry. They foster relationships between students, which produces a community that can grow together in Christ, and they foster relationships between students and adults, which We all understand the more small groups we have, the better. Our job as student ministers is to encourage these groups of community, and make sure the students involved are reaching their friends with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Part of fulfilling this task is by discerning how we should group students together to make a small group.
As you read the different ways on how you can possibly group students together, keep in mind none of these groupings are magical, nor will they cause students to bust down your doors to get into your church. You should also keep in mind the right way to group students together is by the context of your church. All churches are different, and each one caters to the culture inside and outside their walls. What works for one church, many not work for your church, because they’re grouping students by what works best for them. With that said, here are 5 ways you can group your students together.
1. School: Depending on the size of your city, you may have multiple schools represented in your youth group. If so, consider grouping your students by the school they go to. This continues to foster the relationship your students already have together, and gives each small group a goal to reach their school.
2. Gender: Grouping your small groups by gender provides your guys and girls the opportunity to discuss issues they may not be comfortable with because the opposite sex is in the room. We need to be mindful that sometimes guys just need to be guys and girls just need to be girls, and grouping small groups by gender gives students that opportunity.
3. Grade: Each grade puts students at a different phase in life. Seniors are coming to terms with closing a major chapter in their life and starting a new one. While freshmen are just trying to survive. Grouping small groups by grade gives students, who are going through the same phase in life, the chance to connect and know they’re not alone. You can also group grades together i.e. upper classmen and lowerclassmen, or stagger grades i.e. seniors with sophomores and juniors with freshmen, to foster a mentor relationship. Grouping by grade can also be done by middle school and high school.
4. Geographically: This works well if you’re doing in-home small groups. You mark out geographic zones and everyone who lives within that zone is a part of that small group. What I like about this grouping is your zones don’t follow school district zones, which means you’ll connect students in group, who may not get to interact with each other as much, because they go to different schools.
5. Missional: Benjamin Kerns blogs at averageyouthministry.com as well as here on youthmin.org. In June he wrote a post called “What is Your View of Social Status on a High School Campus?” The post is about understanding the social structure of students, which is moving to clusters: an autonomous group of 6-10 students with their own hierarchy and power structure. Each school has its own culture, which is made up of subcultures (a student’s social status). We should consider the idea of grouping students by their subcultures because of the common interest they already share, which opens up the opportunity for that group to reach out to their own culture. I call this missional grouping because it truly reflects what a missionary does: equipping individuals within a culture to reach their own people group.
In the end, your small groups may already be grouped like some of these suggestions, or is a combination of two or three of them. My small groups are grouped by grade and gender and here’s why. I average around 35 students in my youth group, who represent multiple schools. However, I only have a couple of students from each school, so grouping them by school wouldn’t work for me. On top of that, I have some grades that have more students in it than other grades, plus some of those grades have more girls than guys in it. So with all of these factors to consider, I developed four small groups: one high school boys, one high school girls, one middle school boys, and one middle school girls. This is what works best for me. How do you group your small groups, and what are some possible obstacles you may face by grouping your students by one of these ways?