Welcome to the Youth Ministry Mailing and all good wishes for a Happy Easter
Last Saturday I was at a Youth Ministry event in Reading called 'Next Level' that brought together 400 young people and their leaders. It was an extraordinary event and I loved what I saw and experienced. The really great thing from my point of view was how much young people were at the centre of planning and delivering the day, and how encouraging it was to see so many different churches and traditions participating together.
I was really blessed by hearing three seventeen year olds preach. Their passion for following Jesus, and the messages they brought were profound and challenging. Fantastic.
Below are other events that bring young people together to explore faith in action and conversation. I commend these to you as a great opportunity for the young people you work with to encounter God, and a bigger experience of what being a follower of Jesus is about.
I will be taking a party of 15 - 18 year olds to the Taize community in France this summer. I am really excited to be leading this trip having seen before the profound experience being part of the community is for young people. We leave on the 23rd July and return early on the 1st August. Participating in this international pilgrimage of prayer, work and community has inspired tens of thousands of young people from all over the world. Please pass on the information to any young people who would be up for this adventure.
(I am very happy to visit Churches/Youth Groups to talk about the trip). Flyer and information
Yellow Braces 2016 is July 8th - 10th at it's new home for this year of Oakwood Youth Challenge.
This is a fantastic weekend of community, faith, fun, worship and food for young people at Secondary School (plus also a training opportunity for junior leaders). Flyer and booking form
: If you'd like to know more about the Risks around young people and Gaming. Report
Recent reports have uncovered and highlighted the prevalence of young people taking and making inappropriate images and/or putting pressure on others to do so. A number of conversations with young people, and a number of safeguarding inquiries have brought home how vital it is that we help young people explore this issue. There are two links here that I hope will be useful. This one
is aimed at young people, this one
for the leaders
: I hear great things about this annual day for young people, The groups that went from the Diocese had a fantastic experience and were really energized by what the heard and experienced. It will be happening again this Autumn. Website
Christian Resources Exhibition
ExCel Arena London. 17-20 May A dedicated Youth Zone through the 4 days. Specific Children’s Day & Youth Day. Details
There are a number of fantastic organisations running great Summer Camps and Houseparties for Young People. Have a look at Scripture Union
, Urban Saints
, CYFA Ventures
and West Runton
Youthwork the Magazine
have made all their resources, discussion starters and the like FREE in return for you completing a sign up on their site. Well worth it as the material is creative, accessible and up to date. Link is here
This is probably the most used learning and exploring resource amongst those working with older groups. The site has had an update
. (A lot of groups also use the ideas, sessions and discussions from Youthwork Magazine which remains HUGELY useful, you can get a free copy
: Have now gathered all their youth resources
into one place.
The Church of England has a Youth Council made up of teenagers and young adults. I am on the lookout for two new reps to represent our Diocese at the twice yearly meetings. The next gathering is in Nottingham in April. CEYC Website
TRAINING, LEARNING AND CONFERENCES
The Centre for Youth Ministry
are in Oxford and run all sorts of training, courses and opportunities to develop skills and practice in working with young people. Contact Lynda
for more details
MAKING ME SMILE
and if I can offer advice, support, training or encouragement .... or just visit your group, parish or deanery then let me know.
A to Z of Youth Work ....a sometimes humorous but useful guide to key components of Youth Work
This month P: Power
Empowerment, Power Dynamics, and Powerlessness
Diocesan Youth Adviser
01865 208 253
Youth Work rightly is interested in dynamics of power, recognizing where power lies in any given situation and then working creatively to enable equality and participation. For example in a School situation the Teacher may well stand at the front (The adult has power, the standing adds to that Power) by his/her large desk, they are working from Power. Youth workers typically would sit with the young people ... aiming as much as possible to limit the effect of power. A key value of youth work is 'Voluntary Participation' (see V), again working from a non-power model, young people chose to, or not to participate.
Furthermore Youth work aims to give power away. It is not what the adults do for the young people, it is the process of working in a way that encourages young people to work, to challenge, to create. This is what we mean by empowerment.