Real Talk with a Youth Minister
[disclaimer: this is a conversation in my head made up of several actual conversations through my time in youth ministry.]
Me to Youth Minister: I can’t find your youth ministry accounts on social media. What are your usernames?
Youth Minister: We don’t do the Facebook or Instagram. I don’t Twitter. And, Snapchat is satanic.
Youth Minister: Social Media is not healthy for kids.
Me: Who hired you?
Youth Minister: The pastor. He agrees with me.
Me: He has a flip-phone
Youth Minister: Well, the parish has a policy against social media.
Me: Ummm, how can they possibly have a policy against something they’ve never tried?
Youth Minister: The secretary said, “…
Me: The secretary is an 80 year old who thinks the fax machine is the new black and comic sans is cool.
Youth Minister: What’s wrong with comic sans.
Me: “Friends don’t let friends….” Never mind.
Youth Minister: And, actually, she does use social media.
Me: The secretary? You mean she binges funny cat videos on YouTube.
Youth Minister: I’ve used those cat videos at youth group.
Me: You what.
Youth Minister: Ya, so you see I’m not totally against using social media with the kids.
Me: Don’t do that.
Youth Minister: The kids like it.
Me: No they don’t.
Youth Minister: Then why did they laugh so hard when I showed them the Charlie video. It was so funny. You really need to watch it.
Me: I did. In 2007. Charlie’s brother is like 28 and married.
Youth Minister: Is he really?
Me: I have no idea. That’s not the point. If you’re going to have a real impact you need to do better than showing “Charlie Bit My Finger”. I hope there was at least some theological reflection with the video or that it was part of a catechetical context.
Youth Minister: I don’t know what you mean.
Me: Okay, let’s back up. How do you communicate with your youth?
Youth Minister: Fli…
Me: Do. Not. Say. Fliers.
Me: Seriously? Fliers? You are still using fliers?
Youth Minister: Yes, but we do use color ink. It annoys the secretary, but I think it’s important enough for evangelization efforts.
Pray for me as I pray for you and all those who minister to our young church.