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The Student Ministry Preflight Checklist

Before every flight a pilot must perform a preflight inspection.

The pilot in command is responsible for ensuring that the aircraft is in airworthy condition. The pilot must also do a visual inspection of the aircraft. During the visual inspection the pilot will check landing gear, tires, master switches, fuel supply, oil levels, propellers, wings, landing flaps, windshield, and cabin windows.

The purpose of preflight is to evaluate whether or not the airplane is ready to perform a success flight.

Student pastors can learn from the preflight inspections that pilots must complete prior to every flight.

Before a start of a new season (Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer), as a student pastor you can perform your own “preflight check” to ensure that your ministry is ready for another season of successful operation.

What are some items a student pastor can check going into a new season of ministry?

Here’s preflight checklist for student pastors:

Environment: How engaging was your environment over the past season? Is your environment prepared to grow if more students started showing up? How so? What’s one improvement you can immediately implement into your student ministry environment to make it more excellent?

Messaging: How did the communicators connect to the students this past season? What was the best series that was taught in the past 3 months? What messages do your students need to hear in the coming months?

Small Group Leaders: How did you appreciate your SGL’s? How prepared do your SGL’s feel going in week to week to lead their few? What are some ways SGL’s are connecting with their few outside of the group? What concerns do your SGL’s have? What’s one thing you can do in the next 3 months to improve your small group leader culture?

Students: What was the biggest way your student ministry encouraged spiritual growth in your students? Are your students inviting new students? Why or why not? What are the biggest compliments that you’ve heard students say about your ministry? What was one thing that students enjoyed in your student ministry over the past 3 months? Did you capture a powerful story/testimony of a student sharing his or her life change?

Parents: On a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being super awesome and 1 being super weak), how informed and encourage do your parents feel? How can you improve? Did you gain any new families in the past 3 months? Why or why not? How much parent contact did you do initiate over the past 3 months? What’s one new way you can partner with parents in the coming months?

Service: In the past 3 months how did you talk about the importance of serving others? What service opportunities did you give your students? On a scale of 1 to 10 (1 being not at all and 10 being fully understand), how well do your students understand servant leadership? In the coming months, what are ways you can get more students to embrace a servant leadership mindset?

Performing preflight inspections in your student ministry will urge you to honestly and humbly take a peek into how your student ministry is performing. Without these routine checkups and inspections, it’s very easy to become complacent.

The best student ministry leaders are able to assess the current reality within their student ministry, and then immediately begin improving their ministry based on their findings.

What other items would you include in this student ministry preflight checklist?

How often do you evaluate the effectiveness of your student ministry?

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