Youth Pastors have a very integral job in churches and I respect the huge responsibility they have. I know it can be stressful and draining. At one time, I even pondered being a Youth Pastor - to this day, I still give it a lot of thought. Youth Pastors have an amazing ministry and are doing amazing things. Today, I'm not going to mention those.
If there is one thing that makes my job harder yet amazingly comical at the same time, it is the constant dealings with the Pastors of Youth. These fun, zany, hardworkers typically can fall into one evil category - disorganized. Not a little disorganized. We are talking about a heaping pile of Mt. Everest disorganization. They make me appear to be a human filing cabinet. Something that my closer readers will know is quite far from the truth. North Dakota to Japan like far. Yet if there was a competition, I would smoke most of these Youth Pastors. Or maybe it is only the ones I deal with?
Here is a quick list of a few of the fun encounters I'va had with these lovely ministry workers.
1. A Youth Pastor regular, something I've had happen close to 70% of the time, is that they will always misplace the very first contract I send them. Sometimes they will deny ever getting it but most times, they will remember a brief 11 second encounter with it. They then wonder if such a contract is important, while I assure them that it is if they still would like to come. 45% of these Pastors, will lose the second contract I send them. While the other percent will forget to send it out until they are reminded for the 32nd time. Usually most requests for the contract to be returned is greeted by a 'What contract???' Finally, I get half of the contract sent back to me. Apparently, you can pick and choose what parts of a contract you want to send back, nowadays. I won't even bother with the joys of trying to get a deposit. Though, I've had a few tell me the day before they arrive that they just put the deposit in the mail. Yeah, thanks for that.
2. Youth Pastors will make schedules for the weekend retreat. They will also forget them in their office. When I ask them to give me groups of 5 for set up/clean up for meal times, I usually get about 12 kids. It is apparent, Math isn't a major part of most Seminaries.
3. Youth Pastors like to book the camp for 80+ kids. They forget to mention they have about 12 kids in the youth group and 7 of them will be away that weekend. Man, they will get 80 for sure!!! Or they will confirm that they have 55 people coming but then decide it's no big deal to bring 133. Are the rest of these people planning on eating? Ah Youth Pastors, it's a mystery to what numbers will really arrive.
4. True story, I called a church to confirm activities for the weekend that they would be coming up. Youth Pastor wasn't available. I then tried getting in contact for said Youth Pastor for 2 weeks. I finally had my calll returned. Youth Pastor apologized and revealed that he forgot he booked a retreat here. Forgot? Aren't retreats a rather big thing on the youth group calendar? Needless to say, the group didn't come because no one knew they had a retreat here.
5. Want another true story??? Sometimes Youth Pastors procrastinate on sending the contract. The contract that states that it should be sent 6 weeks before the arrival. 6 weeks notice is enough time to make sure Medeba has the staff for the activities that will be wanted. The youth pastor decided to send his contract 3 days before his arrival. Also wanted lots of activities and dining room service. Other words, enough staff that I would have to seek help from outside the camp. Youth Pastors, no concept of time. Thank for the notice, bub.
This is not my bash at Youth Pastors. It's my way of celebrating the disorganizations and care freeness (is this a word?) of the said profession. A profession that is wonderful and meaningful. Just not one that goes well with Guest Group Coordinators. Youth Pastors are menaces to retreat centres everywhere. Beware!!!