Husband. Dad to 5. Student Ministry Pastor. Follower of Jesus. Yatta yatta.


For almost 12 weeks we’ve been talking about a retreat we do for students to train them in their faith and stretch their connection with God to a new normal.  It’s called OGN and it’s next week. 

Every week since Easter I’ve been telling students to sign up.  We passed out sign up sheets.  We have had custom fliers on every table.  We printed it on our summer calendars.   I mention it during every teaching message as an application point.  We have done promo videos and blog posts and twitter updates and it’s in every weekend program in the announcement section and you name it. 

Here’s a typical phone convo with a regular teen who attends every weekend in our ministry:

Me: Hey, how’s summer treating you?

HS student:  Alright.

Me: Gonna do anything sweet?

HS student: Um, I dunno.  I think we’re going camping sometime.

Me: Have you thought about OGN?

HS student:  Yeah, but I don’t have the money.

Me: Yeah, things are crazy right now for everyone.  Is there anything I can do to help?  Have you talked to your parents about how much you could pay?  Maybe we can work out a payment plan or something.

HS student:  No.  They told me I could have this surfboard I want or go to OGN.

Me: Oh…. 

HS student: When is it anyway? 

Me: (IF I COULD SCREAM MY THOUGHTS THEY WOULD SAY:  ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?!!!!?  I HAVE DONE EVERYTHING SHORT OF PIN A NOTE TO YOUR SHIRT!!!!)   Instead I say, “It’s next week. We’re leaving Tuesday and be back the following Monday. ”

HS student: Oh man.  Yeah I’m in summer school.  I can’t go.

Me: Got it. Sounds like tons of fun.  See you Sunday.

HS student: Ok.  late.

then I ponder if I should quit my job cuz I clearly suck at it or just do announcements naked… but then again… they’d be taking pics with their phones to post on the internet and not listening to me and then I’d lose my job anyway and then I’d have my house repossessed and then we’d live in our parents garage with 5 kids and a dog and…

… guess maybe I’ll duct tape fliers to shirts on the way out the door.  


  1. I feel your pain. My students pull the same thing all the time!

  2. I dunno brian, I say you do announcments naked.

    Id like to say its for the benefit of getting the message accross….

    But in actuality i REALLY just want to see you naked

  3. Sadly this doesn’t happen with just students, but adults too!! Well, at least that has been my experience!

  4. Isaac Parra says:

    I feel your pain Brian…the same thing happens to me in our ministry as well. Sometimes I think it’s just middle school students, but it sounds like it happens to everyone!

  5. Vanessa says:

    Mabye you should just wear a shirt that has all the info, so everytime they see you that’s what they see & then you don’t have to waste your breath or all that paper…but then again mabye they just don’t know how to read?? I can see how that would be frusterating.

Leave a Reply