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Post a Comment » Written on June 16th, 2014     
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What if teenagers wanted to follow Jesus, not just avoid hell?

Desire makes us who we are. What teenagers want—whether they possess it, long for it, are terrified by it, deny it, pursue it, or give up on it—impacts their relationships, dictates their actions, forms their character, and shapes their beliefs. So if they actually want Jesus or the church or the kingdom, then they’re more likely to keep wanting their faith beyond youth group.

Woo connects teenagers’ good desires with the Good News. It’s an invitation to reimagine the church as a place where students’ desires are honored; where they will encounter the One who desires and can participate with God in restoring the world.

Woo isn’t another method or gimmick that will bring students flocking to youth group. Instead, it suggests a way of being—one that begins with us. It’s good.

5 Non-Youth Ministry Books that Every Youth Minister Should Read

Post a Comment » Written on June 11th, 2014     
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by Stephen Ingram

I love to read.

I love to read about all sorts of things, but I especially love to read about ministry and how we have the ability to shape it for the future. Some of the most influential books that have shaped my practice and understanding of ministry were not even written with the purpose of youth ministry in mind.

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Ready. Set. Next: The Journey After High School

Post a Comment » Written on May 26th, 2014     
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downloadLast day of school reading recommendation:

As high school draws to a close, teenagers face many questions they’re afraid to ask, insecurities they may be unwilling to examine, and freedoms they’re unsure how to handle. How can we as parents and leaders help our young people prepare for this important transition?

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Post a Comment » Written on May 21st, 2014     
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Worship is a foundational component in most youth ministries. But what if you could challenge teenagers to think differently and more deeply about worship? What if you could push the boundaries of their understanding and their definition of what it means to worship God?

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Recommended Reading

Looking for something to read this summer? Check out these must-read books recommended by the Center for Youth Ministry Studies.


Youth Ministry Management Tools
by Ginny Olson, Diane Elliot, Mike Work, Youth Specialties

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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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New Gap Year Program for Young Adults


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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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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Pure Praise for Youth

Post a Comment » Written on December 25th, 2013     
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During this six-week Bible study, youth will be challenged to “go extreme” in their worship of God. But it’s not their body they’ll push to the max. Instead, they’ll stretch their soul. If they accept this challenge, they’ll condition their heart and mind in ways they might never have thought possible. As a result, they’ll have the privilege of knowing the God of the Universe and worshipping him more intimately and powerfully than they ever imagined!

This relational resource will help youth and youth leaders move past the idea of worship as just “singing and praying” and actually connect with God by using practical, daily exercises in praise that encourage readers to apply what they’re learning about worship. It also instructs youth in the biblical standards of why and how they should praise God.

Anyone who loved Pure Praise will find Pure Praise for Youth just as transforming for the youth in their church!

Francis Chan’s Crazy Love films

Post a Comment » Written on December 9th, 2013     
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How do you take an ordinary, average day and make it something that’s supernatural, where we can be madly in love with God and think about Him all day long?

 That’s the question Francis Chan asks in the Crazy Love films!


In this study resource, each short video session corresponds to one of ten chapters in Francis Chan’s Crazy Love book and includes questions to initiate group discussion, interactions, and practical application. Read the book during the week, then watch the video and discuss the topic at the group meeting. Great for church, small group, youth group, or individual study.

The Crazy Love Study Resource includes ten teaching segments with questions for small group discussion and a printable Small Group Study Guide. Now 50% off. 10 films for $14.99.

And if you need the Crazy Love book, we have those too, for only $11.99.