Four Reasons why we love combining Jr. High and High School for the 30 Hour Famine


By Katie Quesada

paint brushes and abstract paintingAt our church, Jr. High and High School ministries are run separately – our midweek programs are on different nights, and Sunday services at different times. The only exception we have is 30 Hour Famine. We have seen HUGE ministry “wins” in combining Jr. High and High School students for this event of fasting and adventure. Here are my top four reasons why:

1. Our students are good examples to one another. Our High School students come to the Famine with the mindset of service, and in turn lead the younger students. When we equip them through our High School Student Leadership program, the older students step up and are great examples of servants to the Jr. High students, instead of complaining that they’re at an event with younger students.

2.The more adults the better. Plain and simple, when we combine Jr. High and High School, we get BOTH sets of volunteer leaders! And as many of you Famine veterans know, the more leaders the merrier when kids are fasting. Our High School adult volunteers tend to be older than our Jr. High volunteers, and the High School volunteers are able to exemplify a good example of service and leadership for the younger leaders.

3. One month of learning is more impacting with a shared experience. Our 30 Hour Famine is placed into a ‘30 Days of Awareness’ Campaign our students take part in. They read a daily devotional in the month of March focusing on both local and global needs. This is GREAT for families in our church with Jr. High and High School students because their kids are on the same page about big issues and the 30 Hour Famine is a shared experience to take in the idea of hunger and turn it into reality.

4. Because we are separate, transitions are vital. Our Famine is in the spring, and that is a GREAT time to get our 8th graders interacting on a larger scale with High School students and the volunteer staff, and to expose them to the culture of High School ministry as a whole before our official “transitions” program begins. There have been so many years when I hear, “Hey, welcome to High School group! You were in my 30 Hour Famine tribe right? Good to see you again!”

As the High School Director I love that our Jr. High Director and I get to collaborate, share stories of what God is doing in our students’ lives right now, and share the load of an overnight event. In our ministry, we have seen this is the perfect event for collaboration as we join together to follow God’s call to be Christ’s hands and feet to feed the hungry and fight poverty.