3 Questions Church Leaders Should Ask At The Start Of The School Year


The beginning of a new school year is one of my favorite times of year. Even though I’m no longer preparing to learn a new locker combination or figure out the fastest route to get to class, I still find myself perusing the store's school supply aisle and throwing sticky notes, folders, and scented markers into my cart. I love the newness that this time brings. Similar to the start of a new calendar year, it’s a clean slate – a fresh season of possibility. 

No matter what area of ministry they are in, church leaders know this is a time of transition in the church’s year as well. Here are 3 questions that church leaders should ask themselves as the new school year begins.

1. Why do we do what we do?

Have you ever stopped to reflect on why your church does what it does? Not that the things you do are wrong, but it’s never a bad thing to revisit the why behind the what. Why do you play games at the start of your middle school service? Why do you do three songs before the message? Why do you continue a ministry that no longer generates much interest? Make sure there is a purpose to everything that you do. Don’t just do things because, “This is the way we’ve always done it.” This way, you ensure that you’re not doing anything that’s ineffective or distracting from your mission. Everything should point back to fulfilling your church’s mission and vision. 

Related: 3 Steps To Take Your Church To The Next Level

2. How can I be a better leader this year?

One of the Vanderbloemen team’s core values is Constant Improvement. We believe that both as a company and individuals, we can constantly be making ourselves, our work, our systems, and our processes better.

I would challenge you to ask yourself how you can be a more effective person and leader this year. What are one or two areas in which you can improve? Rather than brainstorming a list of ten things you want to be better at by Christmas, perhaps pick one or two that you can really hone in on and master over the next several months. Do you want to be a better encourager of your church staff? Better at organization? A more effective and engaging speaker? Once you decide which things you want to focus on, make a list of two to three practical steps you can take to help you accomplish them. If you would like some awesome content with leadership insight and principles to inspire you, check out our Vanderbloemen blog, our Vanderbloemen Podcast, and Tim Steven’s blog.

Related: 3 Indispensible Management Principles For Leading A Church Staff

3. What goals should we set?

I love setting goals. If I don’t set a goal for myself, I will rarely accomplish much. Goals hold me accountable. I have them written somewhere where I can see them every day to remind me of the person I want to become and how I can get there. What do you want your church or team to accomplish this year? Do you want to see a certain ministry grow in numbers? Do you want to launch new ministry teams? Do you want to read a certain amount of books? Do you want to strive to only be away from your family for a certain amount of nights a week or month or year? If you don’t set goals now, it will be so much harder for you and your church staff to accomplish them when you are in the thick of the school year. 

Related: 16 Books Every Church Leader Should Read On Their Next Sabbatical

Our team here at Vanderbloemen is praying for your church as you prepare for the new school year. We hope that our team and the content on our blog and podcast can be a resource for you as you are in the trenches of ministry. You are our heroes and we’re honored to serve your ministry.

What other questions can help church staff prepare for the upcoming school year?

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