Advice for College Ministers

Found this lying around in my documents folder and I thought it could be useful for some people. I wrote this last May 2012. Enjoy!

My residents from the 2012 Murphy Hall Retreat

Advice for College Ministers:

Never underestimate how much people actually look up to you. They really will see you as a role model.

Challenge 1: Keep your door open as much as possible.

Don’t be surprised if you constantly encounter people in tears… It’s just the nature or the beast and it’s our job to show compassion.

Put your passions into your programs. It makes life much easier and more fulfilling.

Challenge 2: Think positively.

Always be open to being “wrong.” Never think that you have the magic formula to consolation, discernment, or the secret of life. In fact, our ideas of “Consolation,” “discernment,” and “the secret of life” are constantly changing… and so should we.

Challenge 3: Don’t let the “college food” get the best of you… the “freshmen 15” isn’t just for freshmen.

Find a set time for you to meet with a regular group of students every week. Sometimes routine is good.

Make sure to take of care of yourself. Find creative outlets and groups on campus that help you find your truest self.

Challenge 4: Exercise.

The more open you are with the students the more they will be with you.

Remember that time is the great human equalizer. We all have 24 hours in a day. What will you do with those 24 hours?

Challenge 5: Say hello to everyone that passes by.

Try to be very conscious of the events and organizations you want to dedicate your time to. Pray about it and see it through. It’s too easy to get caught up in “too much.” Do things well and with quality, trusting that God is there with you.

Challenge 6: Only floss the teeth that you want to keep.

Don’t underestimate the phrase “I’ll try my best.” Trying “your best” is really… really hard.

Challenge 7: Remember to be kind for everyone is fighting an uphill battle (Plato).

Don’t forget about your loved ones.

Ministers need to be “ministered” too.

Challenge 8: Drink lots of water.

Remember that we ministers are on a journey just like our residents. It is more fun to journey together rather than just taking over the wheel. Share your life experiences and move forward together.

Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.

Challenge 9: Set your own monthly challenge.

While it is our job to lead students in the right direction–remember that there is no “right path.”

Challenge 10: Thank God for everyday.


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