The Ministry of Leadership Development
There are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit; there are different forms of service but the same Lord; there are different workings by the same God who produces all of them in everyone. To each individual the manifestation of the Spirit is given for some benefit (1 Cor 12:4–7).
The ministry of Leadership Development calls forth, affirms, and empowers the diverse gifts, talents, and abilities of adults and young people in our faith communities for comprehensive ministry with adolescents.
Leadership roles in adolescent ministry are key. Leaders must be trained and encouraged. This approach involves a wide diversity of adult and youth leaders in a variety of roles. Many will be involved in direct ministry with adolescents; others will provide support services and yet others will link the ministry effort to the resources of the broader community.
The ministry of leadership development has several important elements that provide direction. Specifically, leadership development
- utilizes adult and adolescent leaders in a variety of leadership roles necessary for comprehensive ministry (These roles include, but are not limited to, ministry coordinators in parishes and schools, school teachers, ministry program leaders and planning teams, overall ministry coordinating team, and support staff.):
- The Ministry Coordinator, must always be qualified and well trained, as well as have an excellent reputation. He or she facilitates the people, programming, and resources of the parish or school community in a comprehensive ministry effort. The coordinator is primarily responsible for facilitating planning, administering programs, developing a leadership system for adult and youth leaders (recruitment, training, and support), and serving as an advocate and link for young people to the faith community and wider community.
- A Coordinating Team, made up of adults and young people, may be formed to work with the ministry coordinator in organizing a comprehensive ministry with adolescents by planning the overall ministry, developing a leadership system, identifying the resources of the faith community, and connecting the ministry with the other ministries and programs of the faith community.
- Program Leaders—adults and adolescents—conduct specific programs and activities within a comprehensive ministry. Program leaders often work with a program planning team who develops, promotes, implements, and evaluates the program.
- Support Staff provide assistance that helps individual programs and the overall ministry function effectively.
- develops a leadership system that invites, trains, supports, and nourishes adult and adolescent leaders and provides for the coordination of leaders throughout a comprehensive ministry;
- develops and nurtures adult leaders of lively faith and maturity with solid theological understandings, relational and ministry skills, and organizational ability appropriate to their particular role in ministry with adolescents;
- empowers all young people for leadership and ministry with their peers—in schools, parishes, and civic communities—by affirming their gifts, equipping them with skills for leadership and ministry, and by placing them in leadership roles or giving them leadership opportunities where they can make a contribution.
We strongly encourage all ministry leaders and communities to call forth the gifts of all young people and empower them for ministry to their peers and leadership in our faith communities. We need their gifts, energy, and vitality. We echo the words of the Holy Father at World Youth Day in Denver:
Young pilgrims, Christ needs you to enlighten the world and to show it the "path to life" (Ps 16).. Place your intelligence, your talents, your enthusiasm, your compassion, and your fortitude at the service of life... The Church needs your energies, your enthusiasm, your youthful ideals, in order to make the Gospel of life penetrate the fabric of society, transforming people's hearts and the structures of society in order to create a civilization of true justice and love (August 15, 1993).