Building Community Among Girls Ministers
(YM360 Note: At youthministry360, we partner with a lot of ministries. Girlsminister.com is an awesome resource for girls ministers. We're love the community they are building and want you to know about them.
Just so you know, youthministry360 isn't officially affiliated with girlsminister.com, and vice versa. They're just a really good ministry doing some really good work. We thought you should know. )
Almost 8 years ago, I got the opportunity of a lifetime: I was asked to be a Girls Minister for 6th-12th grade girls. I was told to dream and build a Girls Ministry blueprint. The great news was that I had a clean slate to work with. The bad news was that I had a clean slate to work with. As I began to dip my toe into the waters of Girls Ministry, I found myself quickly up to my neck in a rapids of needs. I turned to Jesus, my mother, and my mentors, but I remember feeling completely inadequate and also desperately wanting to help. This tension sent me to my knees often. (This tension also sent me driving 6 hours to my childhood home for my 8th grade journal to try and jog my memory of what it felt like to be a Jr. High or High School girl again.) I realized I needed to find other women who were serving in similar positions across the country so we could support one another.
I was able to track down one Girls Minister, Whitney Prosperi, who had recently left her ministry position to become a wife, mother, writer, and speaker. After talking to Whitney, I realized it felt so good to hear someone else know things I was going through. From that moment on I was on the search to find more Girls Ministers. But it wasn't until I started getting the calls from new Girls Ministers that I realized there was a need for a network of workers that could connect online, have their questions answered, and share solutions and encouragement with one another.
At the end of 2008, my church gave me the blessing of a 7-week sabbatical/vacation. It was during this time that I became aware that God was calling me to equip moms, Girls Ministers, and those who work with girls, using my passion for social networking. My husband and I launched a resource site called www.girlsminister.com which features free articles and tips, plus a community tool-bar at the base to connect readers to each other.
We realized there also needed to be a secure network where Girls Ministers could ask questions, share their resources, have webcasts, and safely share things they need prayer for, or encouragement with. So, we launched www.mygirlsministry.com, a social network for all of those things and more. Currently we have over 70 Girls Ministers and volunteers involved in the site, and we're still growing . . . both in numbers and content. The tagline for the site is: "Join the conversation." That's my prayer, that those who work with girls will join in on the conversation and help shape the direction of Girls Ministry.
Without focus, Girls Ministry can devolve into being all about the 3 D's: dating, dieting, and dress. It should be about helping young women develop a healthy relationship with God today, so they do not grow into a broken woman later. I pray this network can help support healthy conversations that guide Godly Girls Ministries towards just that.
- Are you a Girls Minister? What are some specific challenges you face in your role?
- Do you focus on Girls Ministry in your youth group? What are the advantages and/or disadvantages of doing so?
What else is on your mind? We want to hear from you . . .