NextGen and Family ministry models are a rising trend in the world of ministry to children, youth, and families. We’ve recently made this shift ourselves. Previously, our children’s ministry, youth ministry, college and young adults ministry, and marriage and family ministries all operated with separate leadership, separate values and vision, and separate strategies and language. We’ve now merged them in a way that embraces common leadership, common values and vision, and common strategies and language. It’s proving to be a valuable shift and I encourage anyone else out there to consider this as well.
It seems to me that there are two basic models you can choose from: the Family Ministry model or the NextGen model.
The Family Ministry model typically places all ministries, kids through high school as well as marriage and parenting under one umbrella. Sometimes, though rarely, it will include college aged young adults.
The NextGen model typically places all ministries, kids through high school and often times college and young adults under one umbrella. Marriage and parenting will usually fall under separate leadership, particularly some sort of adult ministry.
Our approach to NextGen and Family Ministries places ministries to everyone ages 0 to 25 under one pastor and ministries to parents and marriages under another pastor with the two of them working in close partnership under one common umbrella of shared vision, values, and strategies for ministry.
We’re not a huge church but we’re large enough that we need multiple staff. Currently, our NextGen Ministries includes six staff while Marriage and Family Ministries includes one. That’s primarily because NextGen Ministries are so program intensive. But in all reality, it’s a single team of seven staff.
I’m excited about this new model and can’t wait to see where God takes it.