official launch: youth ministry coaching program

Youth Ministry Coaching Program
A yearlong 360 coaching cohort, focusing on whole-life development and youth ministry issues.

Critical thinking and theological reflection is extremely important for youth workers who don’t merely want to perpetuate the way things have been done in the past. But thinking and reflection are merely one portion (though a significant one) of what will help youth workers stay true to their calling and also grow in maturity and effectiveness. Emotional, relational, and spiritual health are critical to long-term impact. This program is designed to provide both an opportunity for critical reflection and discussion of youth ministry issues, but also to provide safe place to process holistic growth.

In many ways, this program will surpass the training that can be offered by seminars and conventions. It will even surpass the experience of formal education. This is specifically due to the structure of the program (a small cohort with accountability, safety and shared shaping of the content), as well as the content of the program (thoughtful youth ministry dialogue, real life application, personal development, emotional honesty, and spiritual direction).

Expected Outcomes
After completion of the yearlong process in the Youth Ministry Coaching Program, participants will have had the following experiences and opportunities:
• Participants will grow in understanding their strengths and weakness, how these impact their leadership, ministry, and personal life, and how to capitalize on their strengths and minister within their weaknesses.
• They will experience new spiritual growth and insight as they safely process their own journey and the integration of their spiritual selves with their ministry selves.
• Cohort members will receive training on a wide variety of youth ministry issues, with an opportunity for dialogue and contextual application.
• They will have the opportunity to experience thoughtful dialogue on subjects of their own choosing, as the group will help shape the content agenda.
• Participants will develop life-long youth ministry peer relationships of trust and accountability.
• They will read 6 books, discuss them, and reflect on the implications for their own lives and ministries.
• Each will make presentations to the group in areas of their own choosing, with feedback and suggestions from the group.
• They will work through a series of self-selected homework assignments, with input from the group, and accountability from a “homework partner”.
• Participants will have 12 private coaching sessions with Mark Oestreicher (6 in person, 6 via phone).
• And each will have the option of 6 spiritual direction sessions with a trained spiritual director.

Each participant will also receive a certificate of completion at the end of the program.

Structure of the Year
The application process will run through February and March, with a plan to have our first meeting in April or May. Accepted participants will have an opportunity to speak into the actual meeting dates, but once set, the dates will not be flexible.

The cohort will meet every other month for a year. These meetings will likely occur in May, July, September, and November of 2010, and January and March of 2011. The meetings will be held at Journey Community Church, in La Mesa, California (15 minutes from downtown San Diego).

Each meeting will be two days long, starting at 8 am the first day and running through the evening; second day will begin at 8 am and finish by 5 pm.

In addition to the group meetings, participants will be provided a closed social networking site for updates, prayer, questions, and dialogue. This will also be a place for active participation in helping each other with practical issues in youth ministry, and Marko will be involved regularly in giving input and feedback. “Homework partners” will be assigned for the period of time between meetings, and weekly or bi-weekly calls will be expected to provide support and accountability.

In addition, each participant will be scheduled for a short, private coaching session with Mark Oestreicher at each of the 6 group meetings, and will schedule a coaching session to touch base by phone in between each of the group meetings.

Structure for Each 2-day Meeting (subject to change)

Day 1
8 – 9 am Getting caught up and sharing homework results
9:15 – 10:30 am Marko presents a youth ministry topic for discussion, with discussion and dialogue about contextual implications
10:45 am – 12 pm Personal sharing
12 – 2:30 pm
• Lunch break (on your own)
• Personal coaching sessions with Marko
• Spiritual direction appointments (optional)
2:30 – 3:15 pm Team member presentation (a 360 feedback process on a particular problem, idea, or growth opportunity in your life or ministry)
3:15 – 4 pm Team member presentation
4:15 – 5 pm Book discussion
5 – 5:30 pm Quick input blocks
5:30 – 6:30 pm Break
6:30 – 9 pm Dinner together and hanging out (cost of dinner on your own)

Day 2
8 – 8:30 am Prayer
8:30 – 10:30 am Guided discussion(s) around themes suggested and chosen by the group
10:45 am – 12 pm Personal sharing
12 – 2:30 pm
• Lunch break (on your own)
• Personal coaching sessions with Marko
• Spiritual direction appointments (optional)
2:30 – 3:15 pm Team member presentation
3:15 – 4 pm Team member presentation
4:15 – 5 pm Homework assignments

Application Process
• Email Marko ([email protected]) and ask for a copy of the application. It’s a simple form with basic information and questions about why you want to be involved. (If you’d like a copy of this entire post in PDF form, for better printing, please email me.)
• Once your application is received, Marko will schedule a phone call with you to talk through details, motivation, and availability.
• Once you are notified of your acceptance, you will have an opportunity to vote on actual dates for the group meetings.

Other Random Administrative Details
• Only one person from any particular church will be allowed in this first cohort. This is essential for the safe and honest environment we will be cultivating.
• Discounted rates at a nearby hotel will be negotiated for you. More information on this will be given to those who are traveling from out of the San Diego area.
• Our first meeting will begin the evening prior to the two-day schedule, to give us an opportunity to get to know each other.

• A fee of $2500 will be due prior to the first meeting. The reason for this is that, should anyone decide to pull out, we will not be able to add another person to the group once it has started. If paying in one lump sum is a hardship for you, Marko will discuss alternatives with you.
• All other expenses (travel, housing, meals, books) will be your own responsibility.

About Mark Oestreicher
After almost 30 years in youth ministry, Marko is now focusing his energy on consulting with non-profits about youth and young adults, and in launching the Youth Ministry Coaching Program. Marko spent the last 11 years at Youth Specialties (7 of those as the president). Author of more than 50 books for teenagers and youth workers (including the much-discussed Youth Ministry 3.0), Marko regularly speaks to youth and youth workers around the globe. Marko and his wife Jeannie have been married for 24 years and have two children: Liesl (16) and Max (12). Marko is also a volunteer youth worker, leading a middle school boys small group, at his local church.

11 thoughts on “official launch: youth ministry coaching program”

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  2. i would give an arm to be part of this!! unfortunately florida is a long long way from california. any chance of an online/phone coaching opportunity in the future?

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