Weekend Retreats – Weekend retreats for men built around outdoor sports and fellowship themes have a useful role to play in continuing discipleship efforts. Discipleship retreats and day trips for golfers, hunters, motorcycle riders, fishermen, and others use built-in affinities for spiritual growth purposes.
Men’s Fraternity – Men’s Fraternity was started by Robert Lewis, Pastor-at-Large of Fellowship Bible Church in Little Rock, Arkansas. Men’s Fraternity is a series of three one-year-long studies, beginning with “The Quest for Authentic Manhood,” followed by “Authentic Manhood: Winning at Work and Home,” and concluding with “The Great Adventure” series. More than just a rally or a Bible study, Men’s Fraternity provides men with an encouraging process that teaches them how to live lives of authentic manhood as modeled by Jesus Christ and directed by the Word of God. These resources were designed to help men come together and strengthen each other through weekly sessions that combine biblical teaching and small group interaction.
Block Parties – Community-based block parties are avenues for personalizing and contextualizing ministry to students, children, parents and neighborhoods.
Center for Parent-Youth Understanding (CPYU) – Founded in 1990 by Walt Mueller, CPYU has developed an international reputation as a voice providing cutting-edge information, resources and analysis on today’s youth culture. The mission of CPYU is to work with churches, schools, and community organizations to build stronger relationships between young people and those charged with helping them grow into healthy adulthood.
Parent Conferences, Meetings & Study Groups – Special discipleship studies or weekend conferences for student parents can deal with key issues they face with their kids and contemporary culture. Issues might include social media, communication, relationships, addictions, cultural influences, adolescent development, depression, generational conflict, and much more. Some student ministries offer quarterly, monthly or weekly parent meetings.
Student Clusters for Crowd-Gathering Events – Create small groups of students by age and appoint an adult and student leader to make periodic contacts. For group events, such as Wednesday night crowd-gathering activities, set up small clusters of (6-10) chairs so that student groups can sit together. This simple setup change makes the large group less intimidating for newcomers and younger students.
Backyard Kids Clubs – Consider neighborhood-based backyard kids clubs in lieu of a traditional Vacation Bible School to move church members, vision and outreach outside the walls and into the community. Consider unreached areas in your community and mobilize church members in those neighborhoods for ongoing outreach efforts.
Children’s Outreach Event – Encouraging kids to invite unchurched or absentee churched friends to fun events is a great inreach and outreach tool, especially when the event includes a clear presentation of the Gospel. Periodic events, spaced throughout the year on a quarterly basis, for example, build planned inreach and outreach into the ministry calendar.