1. You want more FOR them than FROM them
This is way more than coffee and copies. In fact it’s more than filling a role with some cheap labor. This is about raising up the next generation of church leaders. The goal is to make the student better. The goal is to help them reach their greatest potential. The goal is that you prepare them, train them, make a huge investment, and then send them to their next ministry position. Your ministry should be enhanced by them, but not dependent on them.
2. Your church is healthy
Some signs of a healthy church include reaching lost people, making disciples, and service in the community. All need to be happening regularly. How many new converts have there been in the last 12 months? What is your strategy for spiritual formation and discipleship? How do you tangibly love and serve your community? Another sign of a healthy church is a healthy staff culture. How is this cultivated at your church?
3. You have a stable lead pastor (or leadership team) that believes a resident is worth the investment.
The leadership at your church must see the value of this kingdom investment. Insuring this is true at the top will support the work of the coach and the growth of the resident. If the senior leadership of your church does not support this, you should not apply to be a residency church.
4. You have a ministry leader with the capacity to manage and develop a
student (a coach or mentor)
Not everyone is able to DEVELOP someone else, and giving people opportunity is very different from developing them. Development includes observing the student plan, practice and perform, and giving them helpful feedback on a regular basis. The best way to develop someone is in the context where there is pressure for results with a mentor/coach who believes in you. Can the coach give a growing load of ministry responsibility based on proven performance of the student? Coaches must work FULL TIME in the department that the resident is majoring in.
5. The mentor/coach is willing and able to have a weekly face-to-face meeting
The best way to give regular feedback is a weekly meeting where the coach and the student honestly assess and discuss performance, as well as make plans.
6. You are willing to provide a stipend and/or housing.
Many HIU students have jobs as well as school. While in their residency, this may prove difficult, due to the time commitment at their chosen ministry site. Being willing to provide a stipend (and/or housing if outside of our local area) will help your church to recruit and retain residency students and will also help your students maintain focus on their ministry area.