By Caleb Kaltenbach
PARKER, CO—Just as senior pastors look forward to the fall season attendance bump, youth sports families across the nation delivered a “heads-up” regarding their attendance.
“We’ve never given a ‘heads-up’ about our attendance, but when many of us formed a National Youth Sports Family Social Media Group, we thought it was a good idea,” said Dana Jensen of 66th Street Christian Church, Sedalia, Ohio. Jensen said her pastor’s reaction was a bit unsettling. “He was in such a happy mood that morning, but when I told him that starting in September we’d be gone for two and a half months, his eyes glazed over and he began mumbling.”
Ray Spellman of Louisville, Kentucky, noticed a similar reaction from his pastor. “He just stared off into space, mouthed the words ‘thanks,’ and walked off.”
In Indianapolis, Jenny Miller said her pastor had a quite different reaction.
“He wasn’t bothered at all!” Miller said. “He thanked me for letting him know! He even caught me after service and told me about next Sunday’s new sermon series on ‘committing to church.’ He’s so caring!”
According to the National Youth Sports Family Social Media Group, the “heads-up” covers the next 12 months. Sports families will be away most every weekend September through mid-November, will remain home for at least some of the holidays, will resume travels on weekends February through the end of April, and then remain home a good portion of the summer (aside from three or four weeks of family vacation . . . and assorted traveling leagues and tournaments).
Would the sports families consider attending an evening service?
“Well, if we’re not traveling on Saturday night then we need that evening to rest,” the group representative responded. “Sunday evenings are our family evenings. But we love our churches and are completely sold out to them.”
As we were going to press, a new social media group was started: The Pastors of Youth Sports Families Support Group. We reached out to a representative for comment; after a long pause, he said, “We love our youth sports families.”
Caleb Kaltenbach is just kidding.