Summer often brings a change in hours. Some churches change their worship hours. At St. Paul’s, our second service is moved from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. in place of Sunday School, while our first service stays at 8:30 a.m. Some youth groups stop meeting during the summers. At Crossroads, we stop meeting at the end of May, and shut down just about all programming until September.
The change of time for us is good. We see this as an opportunity to rest, study, and prepare for the start of the new school year. It’s a break for the pastoral staff as well as our volunteers who serve all around the church. (And in our area, summer camp is a big deal. A lot of our students spend the summer go to and work at one or more of the local camps leaving very few students in town.)
But summer also brings a change of work hours. While it’s crazy to even think about counting the hours we spend “working” with students, how I spend that time definitely changes.
During the school year, my days are made up of office hours till around 3:00. At 3:00, I spend time with students at 121 Center Place. If there is any school sports, I’ll head over to the high school to catch some of my students on the field. I try to keep Tuesday’s and Saturday’s as days I spend with the family and working around the house.
But summer brings a change to how I spend time with students and in the office. The first change is making Tuesday a work day and Sunday a day of “relaxed” ministry. (I’ll explain that later.) I set up new office hours for Monday and Wednesday, from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. On Tuesday and Thursday, I schedule time with students in the afternoon and or evenings. Friday mornings are spent caring for the property at 121 Center Place, and the afternoon prepping the worship media for Sunday. Saturdays I try to keep as family days. Between the kids sports, household chores, and time spent with Amy and the kids, that time fills up quickly.
Sunday’s are for “relaxed” ministry. By this I mean, Sunday is a day off. But if we can spend some time with another family from the church or a group of my leaders, or even a group of students, then we’ll do that. Otherwise, we’ll spend the day with just the family.
What do your summer hours look like? Do things slow down or stop during the summer months? Do the summer months mean more “work” then the rest of the year? Please share what your summers look like!