And granted, those who call the shots in most of our churches (i.e. boards, senior pastors, etc.) have expecations that often push us in unhealthy directions (such as a fixation on numbers, big shows, and raised hands).
Because of these things, a youth pastor seems necessary. The demands of the job are way too great for the "average" layperson (a term that, by the way, is not found in scripture).
I've seen lots of great youth workers doing great ministry with teens come to the conclusion that they a youth pastor because they can't keep up with the demands of the youth ministry job that's expected of them.
The verdict's still out on this. I'm not lobbying, just facilitating. Several questions:
- Is a youth pastor necessary? When? Why?
- Is there scriptural support for the position? If so, why did it take 1950 years for us to discover it?
- Can youth ministry exist without a youth pastor? Can it exist without a youth pastor WHILE the people participating in the youth ministry are thinking "We don't need a youth pastor."?
- Is it healthy to build a structure that rises or falls on the back of one person?
- If this structure is unhealthy, what kinds of changes are necessary? Is there a way youth ministry can continue to exist even when it's "head" is chopped off?
Not sure this was one of my most thought-out posts, but hopefully it'll generate discussion.