A youth pastor works within a parish congregation, guiding the younger members in their faith via retreats, after school activities, and counseling. The job description of a youth pastor requires a dedication to the parish mission, the ability to connect with adolescents and teenagers, and a passionate and creative approach to religious education.
A youth pastor organizes activities for the younger members of a congregation, organizing activities like weekend service trips and lock-in retreats, all in the service of promoting youth ministry and sharing the values and mission of the church.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities of a Youth Pastor
- Provides counseling and support to children and teenagers.
- Offers instruction to students in line with the tenets of their faith.
- Organizes after-school activities and weekend trips to promote strong relationships with peers and with the church.
- Arranges service trips to assist others in the parish and greater community.
- Recruits new youth members.
- Sustains dialogue with parents of church youth group to keep them involved in their children’s life and work.
- Manages budget for youth group activities and organizes fundraisers when necessary.
- Assists in planning and organizing Sunday school curriculum.
- Instructs students on how to be future faith-filled leaders
- Participates in and contributes to staff meetings on church-related matters.
Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
- Maintains an outgoing and positive attitude with students.
- Demonstrates a strong commitment to the faith, and leads by example in his or her personal life.
- Must be a good listener and strong public speaker, with ability to effectively educate and preach the church’s religious message.
- Possesses excellent communication skills.
- Collaborates well with individuals of all age groups.
- Demonstrates ability to connect with students, earning their respect and trust.
- Must be creative and innovative, designing new and entertaining ways for students to learn what it means to live a life according to their faith values.
- Must have ability to organize, supervise, and lead a large group of students at one time.
- Must be an active participant in other parish activities.
Education and Experience
- Must demonstrate broad knowledge of the faith.
- Must have experience working with students.
- Previous experience as a youth pastor or in the field of religious education is required.
- Work environment will change frequently depending on the nature of activities.
- Working hours are organized around student schedules, so the majority of student engagement will occur outside of school hours and on weekends.
- Additional time during the day will be spent planning activities in an office setting.
- Must be prepared to conduct some light local traveling and occasional weekend trips.
- Average salaries are $21,000 for youth pastors in small congregations (50-100 parishioners).
- Average salaries are $38,000 per year for medium sized congregations (200-250 parishioners).
- Average salaries are $46,000 per year for large congregations (2,000+ parishioners).