07 November 2004

Let's try some youth ministry

When I started this blog, I wanted to talk about the things I learned in
youth ministry, not necessarily my political views. What I've wanted to
do is wonder out loud and see what people think.

I have to say that my theological views on one hand are orthodox and on
the other hand, can be rather radical, maybe in a nontraditional way.

Since I got back from the National Youth Workers Convention (NYWC) last
month, I have been reading the book, Mike Yaconelli//Collected Writings.
For those of you who don't know Mike Yaconelli, he is a veteran of youth
ministry and the co-founder of Youth Specialties.

I got to see Mike talk at the convention when it was in Pittsburgh two
years ago. He definitely makes you think about the things and traditions
that you follow in the church. Not that they are bad, but that they
aren't the things that make you a Christian. Being a Christian is your
relationship that you have with Jesus. The tradition and ritual can get
you there, but it isn't the relationship. I see that I am getting away
from what I was talking about.

Okay, so I've been reading Mike Yaconelli. So my thing that I try to do
is create relationships with the kids. Trying not to be judgmental
about the things they do, but point out what the bible says and be
supportive without condoning. It was put best today by Rev. Naile in his
sermon today.

He was preaching on the woman caught in adultery (John 8:1-11). We all
have our baggage that we would prefer not to talk about, but we need to
lay down our stones when it comes to others. By the way, not that Rev.
Naile wasn't doing a bad job before, but his preaching has moved up
another notch (at least in my estimation) since he came back from his
pastor exchange to England.

I've also been listening to and reading some of the things that Rob
Bell, the teaching pastor at Mars Hill Church in Grandville, MI, has put
out as well. His talk at the NYWC about how Truth is everywhere in the
world even outside of what we call Christian and that we need to
communicate to the youth that the things that they are challenged with
as being truth have some truth in it. It is our job to prepare them to
sort it out and claim the Truth as theirs, because if they are in the
body of Christ then it is theirs and ours.

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