Leadership Development: Junior Leaders


This is a series of posts which outline our leadership funnel and how we have people enter our leadership community. You can read more about it in general here.

I’m convinced that YL is a grassroots organization. In fact, there is no doubt about it. When done right, whether in my neighborhood here in Scottsdale, AZ, or in another country around the world (this is not just a guess, talk to YL international friends), the mission of YL is owned, fueled and grown by local volunteers who say, “I want to share Jesus in my community!” When I came on staff, I made it my goal to be a good leader (of course), but to be an even better leader of leaders, one who would equip others to own their own mission fields. In the past decade or so, one of the best things we have done to carry this out is to have a formal junior leader program.

A junior leader is a high school junior or senior (with the very rare exception of a sophomore) who is a growing disciple of Jesus, and will be given the keys of leadership to be on a team to reach their friends and junior high friends. So in our area, in April and May we have 5 weeks of training, and a follow up interview for students who want to be a part of this team. In fact, right now I go to all of the high schools each week, Little Caesars pizzas in hand, and head into the classroom of one of our teacher friends to train these (then sophomores and juniors) students in 1) How to grow as a disciple of Jesus, and 2) How to be a Junior Leader. My lunches are completely packed for 6 weeks, but it is worth it! It is not an open invitation, these students must be nominated by their leaders to be in the training. There is homework and I keep track of attendance.  If they make the cut, they will be placed on their YL or WL team and participate in almost every aspect of leadership that our adult leaders do for YL/WL.

Below I’ve included all of my materials in a zip file. Download the file and you will find all the Word documents I use for the training and the Excel file I use to keep track of it all. Use them, edit them, improve them! Let me know if you have any questions and if I can help. Let’s give the ministry away to others! Especially our high school friends.

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