A Family Affair

From the Winter 2013 issue of Relationships magazine.

For the McGinnis family, leading kids to Christ is a family affair. Bob and Randi McGinnis, their two grown daughters and their two sons-in-law all work and volunteer together for Allegheny Valley Young Life near Pittsburgh, Pa.

Bob, a self-proclaimed "second winder," first worked for Young Life in the 1960s-'70s as student staff for two years and as full time staff for four. Then, in 1995, when Bob was 47 years old, God called him back to the Young Life mission field.

"Young Life began to show up in a variety of ways," Bob recalled. "It didn't occur to me to step back into the mission."

But now, at 65, Bob is still the area director of Allegheny Valley and plans to stick around for at least a few more years. Plus, he has the best support system — his family.

Both of Bob's girls grew up in Young Life. Beth participated in club throughout high school and college, served on work crew, and worked as a camp intern. Her younger sister, Bobbi, tagged along with Dad on assignments and helped promote club once she started high school. Bob said many of the younger staff members looked up to his family and hoped to raise their families in  Young Life, too.

"They're just like their dad; they have no problem being up front and all that jazz," Bob said. "They just fell in love with the ministry. It's really a blessing to Randi and me."

Both girls could not be happier working with Dad.

"A lot of people say being a Young Life leader is like leading with family, but to actually lead with family is such a blessing," Beth said. "It was always my goal to be a leader, probably because of the way my mom and dad led — it just looked very attractive."

Bobbi agreed with her older sister. "Personally, I think it's a huge blessing because usually ministry takes you away from family," she said. "It just made sense to do it together. Working together grows you closer to God together."

Bobbi is Allegheny Valley's part-time administrator. Her husband, Nathan, leads with her at Freeport Senior High School. Beth, and her husband, Jonathan, both volunteer as WyldLife leaders at Highlands Middle School.

"If you can't recruit them, grow them," Bob said with a laugh. "Both of the girls have had a tremendous impact on the way their dad does ministry. They have always wanted to encourage me to be better and keep with the times. And Randi is a remarkable partner. The three of them have had an incredible impact on my life. I know I am a better area director because of my family."