In our last episode, Colin and Allen tackled three issues often faced when building a ministry team. So, in this episode, they’re going to talk about how to develop, disciple, and sustain your team so that you can maximize their potential. Find out how to deal with burnt-out volunteers, small group leaders who go off topic, and members of your team who want more theological training.
1. My best volunteers are burnt out.
- Volunteers, especially the best ones, get over extended and burnt out (they don’t know when to say no and it catches up)
- Build time into the schedule for them to take a break
- I.e. summer – suspend weekly meetings, replace with trips and events
- Counsel them to guard against this
- Take them on a retreat
- Set up roles…minister with them.
- Take responsibility for what goes wrong and give credit to them when things go right
2. My volunteers don’t know theology.
- In the case of religious education, many of the willing are not necessarily well-equipped to teach…and how can you lay out really hard qualifications for people who are already volunteering
- I know this company who makes great faith formation resources…
- Consider belts or merit badges (half kidding)
- Make sure we are providing opportunities for education; make it easy for them
- Not only is there the problem of Catechetical knowledge, there are pedagogical skills, small group leading skills, and elements of cultural savvy that volunteers may or may not already have.
- Listen to our podcast!
- Lead a small group with your volunteers…being in a good small group teaches you how to lead a good small group. (at least it helps)
- The director can do the heavy lifting in terms of presentation and pedagogical design so that the volunteer can thrive in a volunteer role.
- Fr Mike videos
3. My volunteers won’t stay on topic.
- There are some people looking for a platform to spout off on some given agenda. They tend to go off topic
- This kind can only be dealt with through prayer and by “throwing a little love their way”
- This, when it comes up, will need a sit down. I often hear about this at trainings. That volunteer who never gets to the video because they talk about global conspiracies the whole time or who shows the video and makes the small group a soap box monologue
- Be kind, be firm, and send him or her our podcast on how to lead a small group
4. There are some volunteers who need a badge and a flashlight (They have a strong need for validation and might grab at authority.)
- Buy some badges and flashlights
- Form the badge and flashlight crowd to understand their purpose
- Thank God for this type of volunteer…they will stay up until 4am on your parish retreat and work very diligently.
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