Resources

A New Definition Of Families

Post a Comment » Written on April 14th, 2014     
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By Leneita Fix

Almost every day I hear a different youth worker complain about a parent who doesn’t really “care” about their child. Have you ever done that? I know I have. The “untraditional” family has become the norm with divorce rates continuing at 60% (in and out of the church), parents cohabiting, and grandparents raising grandchildren.

Then there are the struggles our students are facing.  Bullying, abuse, and identity are universal.  However, there are also drugs, violence, eating disorders, cutting, and just generally being a teen.  We keep saying it’s “harder” for this generation.

Why do we think that? 

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Be Creative with Teaching

Post a Comment » Written on April 9th, 2014     
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Check out this brilliant blog post from Jim Murphy, Youth Pastor at Evangelical Covenant Church of Bemidji.

I love to use mnemonics! 4 words that start with C. The first letter of each word in a sentence or series of points that form an acronym. A 3 line limerick that’s easy to recite. They’re all great. As long as I don’t force the passage out of context or make it too corny, mnemonics are all good. I also love using visual metaphors and being creative with the room or stage design. Even usingiStockPhoto or services like Gracewaymedia.com for graphics are helpful. We show a lot of short “mini-movies” on different topics to serve as lesson hooks, discussion starters, illustrations, etc. We find most of ours at Worship House Media. But most recently we’ve really enjoyed using video student stories related to different topics from Bluefish TV through Rightnow Media. I also really like to use lesson re-enforcing hands-on activities in small groups or little games during large group. Unfortunately, these are much more difficult to put together and orchestrate…especially for large numbers of students. That’s probably why you don’t see this kind of thing much in large youth groups.

My favorite use of creativity in teaching isn’t really gimmick or any sort of special tool. It’s actually just telling the biblical story. But not like talking about the story where you say “I want to tell you about a story in the bible.” Or just explaining the story where you just talk about the things that were happening in the background. Rather, you tell the story as if you’re in the story yourself…you’re one of the persons in the story telling the story. Or maybe not as one of the characters but at least telling it in such a way that it feels like you’re right in the middle of the story. Start with the first sentence being one that grabs their attention and then go back and tell the story leading back to that opening statement. Try experimenting with the various modes of narration, you know like 1st person, 2nd person, and 3rd person. I just recently heard Pastor Chris Brown of North Coast Church employ this kind of creativity in his sermon at our denomination’s annual conference called Midwinter. Check out his website called StoriesThatTeach.com.

 

Jim Murphy
Pastor of Student Life
Covenant Church, Bemidji

Visit Jim’s blog here!



Don’t Mess With Mama Bear

Post a Comment » Written on March 31st, 2014     
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YouTube you can use – Vol. 4, Issue 1

 

Video:



New Gap Year Program for Young Adults

solid

We are excited to let you know about the launch of a new gap year program for young adults called the Solid Rock Discipleship Program. Solid Rock is an extension of the ministry of Lake Beauty Bible Camp and is supported through partnerships with the Evangelical Covenant Church and North Park University.

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The Father Effect: Impacting a Generation of Men

Post a Comment » Written on March 26th, 2014     
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“For 30 years, I thought I was the only one struggling with this issue and that I was all alone.  As I began to share my story, I soon came to understand that there are millions of people suffering from a father wound.”  -John Finch

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Youth Theological Initiative: Still Accepting Applications!

Post a Comment » Written on March 26th, 2014     
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Apply to the Youth Theological Initiative Summer Academy, July 5-26, 2014
The Youth Theological Initiative (YTI) is a summer residential program in Atlanta, Georgia.  We gather forty rising high school juniors and seniors from around the world to Emory University for a three-week experience in Christian theological education. Our goal is to cultivate public theologians for the church and world.  At the YTI Summer Academy, participants engage in:


Switch 2014

Post a Comment » Written on March 24th, 2014     
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6 Dangers You MUST Address To Save Your Youth Group (And What To Do About It)

We hear many stories of teenagers being saved during those formidable youth group years. By the grace of God, many meet Jesus after hearing the Gospel at a lock-in or while building a campfire at a winter retreat. But balancing cultural – or generational – relevance with eternal truth is difficult. How do we appeal to this group? What should we do to declare and demonstrate His love to them? How do we make teenagers into disciples who make disciples now and in their years ahead?

Pastoring and shepherding the younger generation is critical. These teenagers will be the men and women who lead our churches and ministries in the decades ahead. We want these future church leaders to be Gospel-centered, mission-minded, Word-saturated, servant-hearted people, right?

There are dangers facing every youth group, and for the sake of the Church, its flourishing, and the advancement of the Gospel, we must address them.

Here are six common dangers:

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Top 10 Books of 2013

Post a Comment » Written on March 17th, 2014     
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Never too early to turn the minds of young adult pastors toward preparing the high school students at their church for college, or whatever may be next:

BestBooksI haven’t always been a reader. My high school self would probably raise his eyebrows and chuckle a bit at the thought of his “mid-30s-self” offering a list of the 10 best books of the year. I don’t think I had read 10 books (maybe 5? maybe!) until my senior year of high school. (You can read the rest of that story here: “How to Fall in Love… One Book at a Time.”) But now I do read regularly and enjoy talking about books.This year I was able to have an extended conversation about books with my good friend Byron Borger, owner of Hearts & Minds Bookstore. I conducted a webinar with Byron on the theme “Summer Reading: The Best Books for Pastors, Parents and Youth Workers.” It was a lot of fun and reminded me of how seriously we take reading here are CPYU. In fact, CPYU president, Walt Mueller, has already listed his “top 5” books read in 2013: “Five Books I Read Last Year. . . That You Should Read in 2014!

My list will be limited to the books I read this year that were published in 2013 (listed alphabetically by author). And, for the most part, they are books that are at the heart of the mission of the College Transition Initiative: to be a resource for those preparing students for life after high school. Enjoy!

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Discipleship and Mission

Post a Comment » Written on March 12th, 2014     
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Want to get equipped for discipleship and mission?

Bring the Verge 2014 Webcast to your home, group or church – for FREE!

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Can I Ask That?

Post a Comment » Written on March 10th, 2014     
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Because it’s not doubt that’s toxic to faith. It’s silence.

 

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