Today, I was speaking with an FJV (Former Jesuit Volunteer) who volunteered with me in the Midwest province back in 2003-04. He’s in town for ND Vision as a youth minister and is serving at a thriving parish in Ohio. We talked about many things, but one item that came up was the issue of “burn out” in youth ministry. In his eighth or ninth year of youth ministry now, he suggested that the average tenure of youth ministers is something closer to 2 years and that in order to keep going he had been forced to learn how to get past being “burned out.” This made me wonder, is there any good research on burn out among youth ministers? I know there’s research on clergy burn out, but have not heard of anything that examined youth ministers.
So, I am asking here on The Catholic Conversation–do you know of any good research on burn out in youth ministry (or ministry generally)? Even beyond research, are there any good practical books about dealing with burn out in youth ministry?