One of the things I’ve tried to do is serve youth workers not just with resources and training, but also sharing with you from the trenches of youth ministry. That is going to continue as I serve students in this new season, but even in transition I thought it might be helpful/interesting to get an inside glimpse into even something as challenging as leaving a church. Transition is one of the most popular conversation topics we get on the blog or in person.

In that spirit, here’s the letter I sent out to parents last week announcing some big changes in our student ministry – namely, me resigning! I’ll go into more detail about the intentionality of the letter tomorrow, but wanted to give you a chance to read it today. 


Hey Parents! There’s a big change coming to HSM in the next few weeks.

Read the note from Pastor Josh Griffin below!


Dear Parents,

I wanted to write you and let you know what’s stirring in my heart as you will undoubtedly hear that I’ve resigned from my position of High School Pastor. First of all, it’s all good news for me and my family. I am choosing to leave our incredible high school ministry in order to help serve youth workers and churches around the world. I’ve been trying to be both the High School Pastor and a leader in the world of youth ministry and it has gotten to the point where I have to choose. This was the most difficult decision of my life. I love Saddleback Church and I love your kids. I’m so sad to go, but I’m honored to have been a part of such an incredible church and student ministry legacy. My desire is to help other youth groups build what we have experienced for decades.
josh_baptism_saddleaback.jpgSince my family moved from Michigan 12 years ago, we’ve been serving at Saddleback and have seen God do incredible things: countless young lives changed, thousands of baptisms, hundreds of caring adult volunteers catching a vision for helping teenagers know Jesus…it has been absolutely incredible. Then there’s HSM Summer Camp which is almost indescribable, amazing student leaders, epic events, and mission trips all over the world. God has been SO faithful and it has been my privilege to play a small role and have a front-row seat to God’s faithfulness. I now understand the word “bittersweet” a little more deeply. 

I also wanted to reassure you of the future of HSM. We’ve been working hard to make sure it doesn’t miss a beat in the transition. HSM Summer Camp 2016 will be the best ever. Our amazing Life Group leaders are more committed than ever. God’s Spirit is so at work, and I will even get to come back and speak every once in a while. How cool is that?
Saddleback will continue to be our church home and I hope to run into you and share with you my excitement for the future. Thank you for your support as I’ve tried to help your teenager fall more deeply in love with Jesus.
Josh Griffin
High School Pastor
Saddleback Church