What is Sponsorship?
Each young person who attends Chrysalis has a “sponsor” who supports and encourages him/her before, during, and after the Chrysalis experience.
Sponsorship is the way in which the Chrysalis experience is passed on from person to person, reflecting the manner in which God purposefully reaches out to people through other people. After a Chrysalis Weekend, participants want to share the gift of those three days with others. Sponsorship provides them a caring and disciplined way for them to share. And in doing so, sponsors participate in and demonstrate God’s outreaching love.
Sponsorship is taken for granted in many communities. The assumption is that everyone knows the how and why of sponsorship. Sometimes sponsorship is only discussed with reference to the number of participants signed up for a Chrysalis Weekend.
Sponsorship, however, is the most important job in the Chrysalis Movement. It is a job shared by the adults who have been through Emmaus and the young people who have been through Chrysalis. It is more than simply “signing youth up.” The importance of a Chrysalis Community being educated about good sponsorship cannot be overemphasized. The quality of sponsorship impacts the new participants, the health of the Chrysalis Movement in an area, and the churches being affected by Chrysalis.
How do I Sponsor Someone?
The Aim Of Sponsorship
The aim of sponsorship is the same as the aim of Chrysalis: the spiritual growth of young Christians as disciples of Jesus Christ through churches and their youth groups. The aim is not to get all your friends to go, to have a full three days, or to fix a problem. Rather, sponsorship is motivated by hopes that friends will experience the accepting and healing grace of God through Christian community; hear anew the gospel of God’s love in Jesus Christ and the basics of Christian faith and life; make friends with other youth who share the faith and will support each other in living as Christians; develop relationships with mature Christian adults, relationships that might extend beyond the Chrysalis three days; be strengthened in their decisions to follow Jesus and become better prepared to live as Christian witnesses at home, school, church, and community; and bring new vitality to the church and youth group after the three days.
Ages Of Participants
High School Chrysalis (Flights) is for young people fifteen to eighteen years of age in the ninth through twelfth grades. Chrysalis is for young people who are ready to think about the realities and struggles of life on a more adult level: “What am I going to do with my life?” “Who do I want to become?” “What do I believe?” “What kinds of relationships are lasting and meaningful?” “What does it mean to live as a Christian, and how do I do it?” Young people who have not completed ninth grade will benefit by waiting to be sponsored with their age group. Young people gain more from Chrysalis when they are spiritually ready, and when they are looking toward their future.
Whom To Sponsor
Who is Chrysalis really for and who is to be sponsored?
- Young people who are attending church and youth groups.
- Leaders in the church youth group.
- Mature youth and leaders on campus.
- Youth with fledgling faith or limited Christian background.
- Youth in the church who are not involved in the youth group activities.
- Youth of various races, economic backgrounds, and churches.
Sponsorship is an act of love for God, for young people, and for the church. It is a living demonstration of agape love. As sponsors we become instruments of God’s design.
12 Steps of Sponsorship:
- Plan. Plan with other sponsors to sponsor more than one young person from your church, if possible. They will have friends with whom to go and with whom to share their NEXT STEPS. Plan especially to sponsor those whose leadership and involvement will vitalize the youth group.
- Pray. Pray about those you would like to sponsor and other God would lead you to sponsor. Pray for the young people’s openness to God’s call to discipleship, not for how to get them to go on a Chrysalis three days. Trust God to motivate the young people.
- Set an appointment. Share the potential “participants” the purpose of Chrysalis, its benefits for you, some of the positive aspects of the Chrysalis three days, and the follow-up dimension. Also make an appointment to share in more depth with the parents of guardians the basic elements and value of Chrysalis. Alleviate their concerns. Provide the information and assurances they may need.
- Extend an invitation and seek a commitment. Explain the cost. Have the attitude that you are giving young people a wonderful gift rather than that they “need” to go. Ask them to make a commitment by filling out the registration form.
- Collaborate as co-sponsor. Work with another young person or adult as co-sponsor, if that will help. Sometimes it takes more than one sponsor to get the job or sponsorship done well. Young or inexperienced sponsors often need to work with a mature co-sponsor. If you are a Team member, find a co-sponsor to bring the person to the Chrysalis location and to pray during Sponsors’ Hour events.
- Make preparations for the young person. Continue to pray for him or her. Enlist the support of the pastor. Personal gifts are not given on the Chrysalis three days. Collect ten to twelve personal agape letters. Do not ask the team to deliver personal gifts to the young person for you or from anyone else during the three days. Make sure the person being sponsored knows what to bring, what clothes to wear, and that he or she will be expected to stay on-site throughout the three days.
- Make sacrifices for the young person. Plan to handle whatever responsibilities need attention on behalf of the young person during the Chrysalis three days, such as feeding the dog, mowing the yard, changing the tires, baby sitting. Think about things you can do that will really help the young person and even make it possible for him or her to go to Chrysalis.
- Support Chrysalis during the three-days. Sign up for the 72-hour Prayer Vigil; be present at Sponsors’ Hour, Candlelight, and Closing. Invite the young person’s parents to Send Off, Sponsors’ Hour, and/or Closing, where appropriate. Prepare the parents for the nature of the Closing experience.
- Encourage new “Butterflies” to join Next Steps groups. Give them an opportunity to talk about their three-day experience and what it meant to them. Help the new “Butterflies” find a group. Start a group with them, if necessary.
- Take your “Butterfly” to Hoots or Gatherings. Invite new “Butterflies” to go to Hoots or Gatherings with you for a couple of months or more. Help them feel that they are a part of what’s going on. Help your “Butterfly” know how he or she can participate in the Chrysalis Community, support upcoming Chrysalis three days, and perhaps someday be on teams.
- Help new “Butterflies” act on new commitment. Encourage them to share their experience with their pastor, youth group, and youth leader. Invite them to become part of your church and youth group, if they don’t have one. Encourage them to follow through on fresh hopes and dreams, decisions and changes they feel God is calling them to make.
- Help new “Butterflies” be sponsors. Assist them the first time they sponsor someone else. Make sure they know the responsibilities and expectations of sponsors. Above all, be a model sponsor yoruself. Set a good example.