Home Youth Leaders Articles for Youth Leaders Why Introverts Often Make Great Youth Pastors

Why Introverts Often Make Great Youth Pastors

My name is Benjer, and I’m an introverted youth pastor.

For many years, I believed that being an introvert as a youth pastor was a bad thing. When I spent time in youth ministry networks or attended youth ministry conferences, I got the idea that every other youth pastor in the world was a fun-loving, loud, couldn’t-get-enough-of-people type of person. I felt out of place in the world of youth ministry, because while I love people and working with teenagers, I feel most renewed when I am alone or with just a few people. Loud events, tons of people or seven straight days of summer camp are more draining to me than energy giving. Don’t get me wrong; when God uses those types of settings to work in students’ lives, I love them, and that’s why I still do them. But when I get home, I need some time to myself, or I just might explode or get completely burnt out.

I’ve come to realize that being an introverted youth pastor isn’t a bad thing. In fact, it’s who I am, and for some reason, it’s how God has wired me. And the more youth pastors I meet, the more I realize that I’m not the only one. If you’re also in the introverted camp, you might feel the same way I used to feel: like I was somehow missing something by not being a loud, crazy, off-the-wall kind of guy. But I believe there are actually some strengths to being an introverted youth pastor. Here are a few:

Introverts like to take time to think, consider, plan and pray.

If you’re an introvert, chances are you’re more willing to take time to do the quiet, behind-the-scenes work of ministry that’s necessary for a leader to do. No, a youth pastor can’t spend all of his time locked in his or her office, but an introvert will likely be inclined to do tasks that can only be done when others aren’t around.

Introverts understand how to love introverts.

Teenagers definitely love to have fun — even introverts. However, an introverted youth pastor will understand that some youth ministry programming needs to be geared towards teenagers who get overwhelmed by always being around lots of other people. Small groups, mentoring and down time during a retreat are all things that introverted teenagers need, and an introverted youth pastor gets that.

Introverts like the one-on-one time it takes to develop leaders.

Just because someone’s an introvert doesn’t mean he or she doesn’t like spending time with people. In fact, many introverts who get worn out by crowds love time with just one or two other people. Many introverts are wired such that they enjoy mentoring and developing other leaders, which is crucial to a building a great youth ministry team.

Tomorrow, we’ll take a look at some of the downsides to being an introverted youth pastor. After all, it’s only fair to look at both sides of the coin.

Question: What do you see that are some strengths of being an introverted youth pastor?