Last week I had the pleasure to meet with three members of our Youth Discipleship Team at two different coffee shops in our area. We were able to talk about our personal struggles and how God's grace is meeting us in our weakness. We also were able to share our concerns for the youth in our discipleship groups, rejoicing that there were multiple conversations going on with them and that our unique gifts were able to help them and build them up. As I reflected on these conversations I am so thankful to be ministering to these youth AS A TEAM. No single person, minister or layperson, is able to meet every need or connect deeply with each person.
Some recent milestones I'd like to share that excite me about our ministry to youth:
- our youth are studying the Psalms together to examine what an emotionally and theologically rich faith looks like that includes experiences like joy, tears, depression and comfort.
- three families have opened their homes to our youth for our First Friday fellowship nights.
- we have between 15-20 of our youth involved in our guys and girls discipleship groups led by 6-8 caring adults each month.
- 6 adults stepped up when we issued a call for chaperones
- 1 family offered scholarship help for kids to go to camp
- older men gathering with our young men for bowling, hoping for fellowship and future mentoring relationships to be built
What we still need......
- people to pray for our youth by name
- people to engage youth in conversation on Sundays
- parents and other adults to host and/or cook food for our First Friday Night fellowships, plus a coordinator to track and schedule those who volunteer to feed us!
- Male and Female chaperones for our summer Senior High camp, July 27-31st in North East, MD (only 1.5 hours away!)
To catch more of our vision for our Youth Discipleship ministry and your part in it, I've produced the following videos (with the help of Ben "Bentern" Bailey).
Thanks for your prayers, encouragement and partnership in raising up our Hope Youth in the grace of Jesus!