I met with an emerging adult not long ago for a conversation about life and church. Obviously both can be messy topics and sure enough, our conversation revealed multiple layers of chaos.
What struck me most was not the chaos, but instead that this person had not had a mentor before. They had not had someone who would listen, speak into their life, or even break bread with (other then their parents). It broke my heart.
The Fuller Youth Institute and their research found in Sticky Faith, Growing Young, and Growing With all point to something powerful. Despite the age segregation that exists in our churches and broader culture, each young person is greatly benefited when surrounded by a team of five adults. They call this the new 5:1 ratio. A system of support and walking along side that quite simply feels like something we profess when we baptize our children.
In this months Youth Ministry newsletter, Travis Deur, Classis Lake Superior Youth Ministry Champion, talks about his experiences with this current research and the impact it can have on the local church.