Budgets are (not) boring!

As the Church Council President adjourned our congregation’s annual meeting, the high school teens swarmed me.

“How can it just end like that?”

“We still have questions about the budget!”

They quickly rattled them off, rapid firing one after another.

Upon seeing their engagement with our budget, I asked, “Would it be helpful to keep talking about this next week?”

“Yes!” they replied emphatically.

With that, I grabbed Jim, the congregation’s treasurer and asked if he’d be willing to join us the following Sunday to answer questions about our church’s budget. “Of course!” he replied. “How cool is it that our high school kids want to keep talking about the budget?!?”

A week later, Jim showed up in the Youth Room, rice crispy treats in hand. “My wife says budgets are boring and I needed to bring food.”

As our high school teens gathered, I introduced Jim and Craig, another one of our congregation’s council members to them. We then dug into the budget. For the next 45 minutes, our teens asked Jim & Craig various questions about the church’s budget:

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Jen Bradbury on Youth Ministry

Jen serves as the Minister of Youth and Family at Atonement Lutheran Church in Barrington, Illinois. A veteran youth worker, Jen holds an MA in Youth Ministry Leadership from Huntington University. Jen is the author of The Jesus Gap: What Teens Actually Believe about Jesus (The Youth Cartel), The Real Jesus (The Youth Cartel), Unleashing the Hidden Potential of Your Student Leaders (Abingdon), and A Mission That Matters (Abingdon). Her writing has also appeared in YouthWorker Journal, Immerse, and The Christian Century. Jen is also the Assistant Director of Arbor Research Group where she has led many national studies. When not doing ministry or research, she and her husband, Doug, and daughter, Hope, can be found traveling and enjoying life together.

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A Mission That Matters: How To Do Short-Term Missions Without Long-Term Harm

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Unleashing the Hidden Potential of your Student Leaders

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The Real Jesus

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The Jesus Gap

What Teens Actually Believe About Jesus

Based on National Research

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