This is a follow up to the post and discussion from a couple weeks ago regarding regarding the importance of junior high relationships. Here's a follow up thought:
As your ministry grows, the ability to be relational with students becomes both more important and more challenging at the same time. I think there are probably three strategic ways to keep the relational touch in a ministry that is growing:
1) Recruit more adult leaders to help thus keeping the student-to-leader ratio small enough to ensure relational ministry.
2) Implement some sort of small group structure that allows the big group to feel smaller and helps emphasize the importance of relational ministry.
3) Create systems that help the ministry 'feel' smaller and more relational.
I think strategies 1 and 2 are probably getting most of the effort and attention (at least I know they are in our ministry). But what about strategy number 3? What systems can and should be in place to ensure kids don't fall through the cracks? What type of follow up strategy? How do you track kids? Do you take attendance? Do you have a database software and if so what is it (this is an issue for us right now)?
There's nothing sexy about systems, but certainly they are the third leg of the relational stool.