A Bible Club in your school can help you reach your friends and fellow students for Christ. And YES, you can host a Bible Club in your school.
God has called every believer to be a missionary with His Great Commission; “…Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15 You KNOW He’s been speaking to you about beginning a Bible Club in your school but you just don’t know where to begin. It’s not really hard and with prayer and a desire to see your friends come to Christ, you can see great things begin in your school.
The Law ~
You are protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution and the Equal Access Act passed by Congress in 1984. The basic purpose of the Act is to give religious and political clubs the same privileges and access to school facilities that other student clubs enjoy. Once your school provides other non-curricular clubs to meet, you are entitled to the same benefits as those clubs.
A “qualified student club” is one that is student initiated and student led. Faculty can be involved only to monitor, facilitate, or supervise, and non-school persons cannot be regularly and directly involved in the meetings. The school still retains the ability to regulate and restrict clubs that “materially and substantially interfere with the orderly conduct of educational activities within the school.” (That simply means you can’t interrupt math class to have your club.)
Schools also have the right to “maintain order and discipline on school premises, to protect the well being of students and faculty, and to assure that attendance of students at meetings is voluntary.”
The Plan ~
- Gather together your Christian friends who have the same vision as you to win your school for Christ. Pray together for your fellow students. Pray for the administration of your school district, school board members and teachers
2. Begin praying together for a teacher who is a Christian and has the same vision as you and your friends. They will be, according to law, a supervisor of the Bible Club while you and your friends will be in charge.
- Find an adult mentor outside of the school…. youth pastor, parents, teacher (off grounds), church member, or maybe your neighbor who loves the Lord and is willing to help.
- Talk to teachers you have chosen and ask if he/she would be willing to be your supervisor of the club. Ask for a written commitment from the teacher that says she will do it to show your principal that you have a teacher willing to be the club’s sponsor. Teachers do not partake in running the club. They just assure the principal that adult supervision will be present. (This is a ministry itself because they are enabling the club to happen.)
- Choose your student leaders. Choose a president, vice president and secretary for your Bible Club. This gives more clout to what you are doing and makes it official. Have each leader sign a paper dedicating himself to the task. It doesn’t need to be fancy or a legal binding document; it just needs to state that they are willing to fulfill the duty with a signature.
- Present your Bible Club to your school principal. If your principal is apprehensive, do not make demands. Talk to your adult mentor. Enlist the help of your youth pastor, your parents, and any other interested adults you know. Obey the government guidelines; your goal is not to make legal trouble for your school.
Create a portfolio for your principal with the following included:
- A brief Mission Statement – what you are trying to accomplish
- List of club officers
- A print out of Legal Rights information (The Alliance Defending Freedom.org has the law stated.)
- Ask your principal for a room in which to meet.
- Plan a time and date, when it’s convenient for the majority of students in your school and make sure the time is okayed by the school principal.
- Plan a program. If there is not plan, things will fall apart quickly. You will want to include prayer and Bible study, but a short game and maybe skits might come into play. Short, on-target videos can be implemented every once in a while, but not on a regular basis. Snacks will draw kids, but aren’t always necessary.
- Invite your youth pastor to speak for your first meeting. If your community is blessed with a Christian celebrity, ask him to speak.
- Advertise by word of mouth and print off some flyers to hand out. Put an advertisement in the school paper. Have it announced during morning announcements. Put posters up around the school with permission from your sponsor or principal.
It’s Begun ~
- Meet in your assigned a room. Even if you only are one or two in number, start meeting together in that room for prayer. Contact others who are Christians and ask them to join you. Contact local youth pastors and share what you are doing and ask them to encourage their students to become involved. You can ask youth pastors to speak at your club; you just can’t have the same outside person involved on a regular or frequent basis. By asking a youth pastor to pray with you or speak to you, he will be more inclined to encourage his students to join in the club.
- After each meeting, evaluate and plan for the next. Continue getting the word out and don’t be discouraged. It often takes time and repeated invites for others to join you.
- Keep praying!!! Be consistent with your meetings; you can’t cancel! Be persistent in asking those around you to join you. Sometimes it takes several “asks” before someone will “try it out”. Don’t be discouraged; anything that is worth growing takes time, dedication and hard work with much prayer.
We would be glad to help you in any way we can. We can provide speakers from our staff and we would love to encourage you as you begin your Bible Club in your school. Contact us! firstname.lastname@example.org 814.444.9500