Sometimes I think that while everyone in my church thinks it’s important to care for the poor, when we start to actively participate in projects around social justice, there’s an uneasiness that gets in the way of support for our efforts.
Let me explain. Everybody in church agrees that we should care of the poor and those who are persecuted. But for some reason, when we begin to talk about the poor and suggest that our youth group should actually help individuals, I never feel that I have 100% support. My guess is that some folks believe “social justice” is a liberal term. Others have a flawed logic that if poor people just worked harder, they wouldn’t be poor. Anyone else experienced this?
I’m always more than happy to take the time to explain our youth group activities and lessons with members of the church. But at the same time, I have chosen to keep the focus on our youth group and the lessons they learn when they actively seek justice and love mercy. I’ve never had a student or the parent of a student complain about our work once we return from a service activity. Quite the opposite. Once I have gotten our youth group involved in mercy projects, there has been momentum to continue this work.
How have you involved your youth group in social justice issues? Have your efforts been supported by most or all of your congregation?