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Adult Content in Youth Ministry?

I’m getting really old. I think it’s kind of funny to see me morph into my parents. But what’s not funny is the content I see and hear on the phones, iPods, iPads, and other communication tools that students are using. I’m trying to figure out how to deal with what I believe is 

Youth Ministry
Blog
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How Involved Should Denominations be in Youth Ministry?

This is a question for which there are an endless number of opinions and answers.  There isn’t even agreement on how involved the CRC is at this point. Some believe there is sufficient leadership and resourcing for congregations around youth ministry. Others believe it should be...

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Youth Challenge: Reading the Bible in a year

Here’s a challenge for you and your youth group. See if you can get members of your youth group to commit to reading through the Bible in a year. I’ve done this the last two years and I wish I had started it when I was young. 

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Lonely in a Crowd

Have you ever been in the middle of a crowd where you didn’t know anyone else? It’s actually pretty easy to feel alone in the middle of a crowd. It’s also a common occurrence in our schools and youth groups and it breaks my heart.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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A Follow-Up: Welcoming Young People in Our Congregations

Last week, we had a guest blogger for the Youth Network who did a wonderful job reminding us of the subtle and not-so-subtle ways we label young people and keep them at arm’s length in our congregations. So, if we are going to own this challenge we have with making young people feel welcome, what are we going to do about it?

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Teach Your Children Well (and Teach Them to Tithe)

My oldest son has a part-time job and I’ve realized that our church doesn’t have anything set up to receive his tithing.  Sure, he can drop cash in the offering, but there’s isn’t any communication, offering envelopes, or focus on his tithing. How cool would it be to have a focus in our youth ministry around tithing?

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Threats to Evangelical Christianity

The Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life recently completed a survey of evangelical protestant leaders and the results show a deep concern around the negative impact of secularism on the future of evangelical Christianity. Do you think your youth group shares that concern? It would make a great discussion topic.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Dealing with Tragedy

If you’ve been a youth leader for a while, you’ve had to work through the pain of tragedy and death with your youth group members. Whether it’s a member of your group, a family member or a friend from school, tragic accidents and death certainly creep into our lives. Youth groups are a healthy place to help students deal with their emotions ...

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Whose Job Is It to Raise Godly Teens?

Several years ago, a few teens from the church youth group were caught drinking alcohol in a motel room on a school day. Angry parents demanded to know, “What are you teaching our students in youth group?” It was shocking that parents were so quick to lay blame on the youth pastor and his volunteers.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Coaching and Mentoring for Youth Leaders

In the business world, a significant number of executives rely on coaches or mentors to support their ongoing personal and professional growth. More and more pastors and non-profit leaders are turning to coaches/mentors as well.  Hey, if it works for everyone else, it will probably work for youth leaders too!

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Get Your Youth Involved in VBS

Maybe it’s too late for this suggestion, but if your church is running a Vacation Bible School later this summer, consider getting your entire youth group actively involved in the program.  My experience is that this will bring a wonderful energy to the VBS, and it will have a long-lasting impact on both your youth group and youth involvement in the church.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Youth Ministry Networks Revitalize Leaders

A congregation cannot have a healthy youth ministry if the youth leader is not emotionally healthy. I would urge youth leaders to consider forming small networks with 3-4 other youth leaders in order to build up their own well-being and energize each other.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Youth Service Projects that Revitalize the Church

In both the CRC and RCA, there are a number of congregations worshiping in very old sanctuaries that need significant work. For some of these congregations, the contributions of members barely cover assessments and salaries and leave little or no funds for building upkeep.  Rarely do I see youth group service teams come in 

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Praying Over Your Youth Group

So how many members of your congregation pray each day for a student in your congregation? Have you asked them to? How many students do you lift up in prayer each day? I believe the one of the most important actions a youth leader can do is to pray for students and offer members of the congregation that same opportunity.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Communicating with Parents of Your Youth Group Members

Last week I blogged about a communication strategy with your students.  I thought I would add some thoughts on how to communicate with the parents of youth group members as well. If you build a partnership with parents and keep them involved in your youth ministry, you’ll have far fewer surprises and far more support.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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How are You Getting Your Message to Your Youth Group?

I love to talk about communication strategy and how to ensure the correct message gets to the right people.  I frequently work with congregations, church plants and sometimes youth leaders to figure out how to communicate well with their intended audience. In this case, the focus could be on the best methods to communicate with youth.

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Ramping Up our Diversity Discipleship and Resources for Youth

Of all the topics I’ve been asked to provide as a youth leader, diversity discipleship and preparing students for a multiracial future in the Church is not one of them.  I wonder why? As I look at the world through the eyes of our youth, I am even more unsure as to why this topic is so often ignored

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Should Young People be at Synod?

Should more youth be represented at Synod? And if so, how would they be represented? By participating? By watching? By participating in various service roles at Synod? Do they want to be at Synod? Lots of folks say that youth are not the church of tomorrow but instead are the church of today. Do we mean that?

Youth Ministry
Blog
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Youth Ministry All Summer Long

Does your church stop youth ministry in the summer? If so, you may be missing out on an opportunity to connect with students in a slower, less stressful window in their lives. 

Youth Ministry
Blog
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The Belhar Confession and Youth Ministry

At Synod and throughout the next year, the CRC will be considering whether or not the Belhar Confession should become one of the confessions of the CRC. But I’m far more interested in seeing it lived out by the Church.

Youth Ministry

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