How do we tell them we're leaving?
How do you have closure for a youth group when there is a change in leadership? My wife and I are working with a youth group. In the beginning we were the only leaders, we had no staff, or volunteers- so we got really close to the teens in our group. There is now 3 other Male adults that help us out. But now my wife and I are moving from NY to CA. What is the best way to move on to where God is calling us, with out having the youth think that we are just leaving them? I know that many of these kids have already had a parent leave them.
Thanks for the email.
That's always a tough one. No easy answer. The best thing to do is be very honest and let them know ASAP. This is the most important thing. They might respond poorly if they hear it from their parents via the local gossip in the choir loft.
Then continue to serve for the reminder of your time there and prove that you love them by being there. Don't fade away like a “lame duck” president. (I use that strictly as the definition of the guy in office who does nothing once the new guy is voted in.)
It's not easy to leave. Tears and hurt feelings are natural. You can't change the situation. But you CAN be a light and a comfort IN the situation.
Hope that helps.
The Source for Youth Ministry
Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new The Bullying Breakthrough; The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices; If I Had a Parenting Do Over; and the Amazon Best Seller - The Guy's Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket. He speaks to parents and leaders worldwide, all while providing free resources for youth workers on TheSource4YM.com. Jonathan, his wife Lori, and their three kids live in California.