What is Pathfinders?
The Pathfinder program is a Christian Organization for young people grades 5-12. Today, there are more than two million Pathfinders worldwide. Youth learn to share and care about others as they become involved in community service projects and go on short-term mission trips.
At a Pathfinder Club meeting, young people learn skills that help them to become leaders within their communities, schools and churches. Skills in household arts, crafts & hobbies, health science, nature, outreach, recreation and vocation are taught. There are many different areas, in which a youth has opportunity to serve, such as: dental, medical, optical, building projects, cleaning up a community or helping with Vacation Bible Schools.
Though Pathfinders is an organization of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, one need not be a church member to become a Pathfinder. Youth can feel proud of belonging to a group that encourages and helps them to be the most caring people they can possibly become.
How do I start a Pathfinder Club?
Starting a Pathfinder Club is one of life’s greatest adventures with God. Through continued prayer and personal Bible study the Holy Spirit will guide and equip you as you establish Pathfinder ministry in your church. You and your church will never be the same again!
1. Create a Local Leadership Network. Contact your Pastor, your Area Coordinator, and your Conference Pathfinder Director and plan to meet with them on a regular basis for guidance and direction.
2. Purchase a Pathfinder Staff Manual from AdventSource.org and become familiar with the Philosophy & Objectives and the concepts and structure of Pathfinder ministry.
3. Receive Board Approval. Because having a Pathfinder Club is an outreach ministry of your local church, it is required that your church board approves it with recorded actions in the board minutes. Together with your Pastor, review the New Club Proposal form in order to put together a proposal to present to your church board.
New Club Proposal
4. Obtain Church Support. Get signatures from church board members as specified on the Club Charter Application and mail or fax the completed form to the Washington Conference Pathfinder office. This will put your Church's support in writing. This is a yearly requirement.
Club Charter Application
5. Receive Certificate of Operation. Once the Washington Pathfinder Office receives your Club Charter Application you will receive a Certificate of Operation.
6. Recruit New Members. With the support of your Pastor and the church board, recruit members to become active as Staff. Share the need, vision, and enthusiasm of what Pathfinder ministry can do for your youth and larger community around your church.
7. Involve your Area Coordinator to join you for Staff organizational meetings to help teach the fundamentals of Pathfindering and to build the ministry vision of your Staff. (Who is my area coordinator?)