What if parents actually read the books Christian youth ministry encouraged young people to read?

I thought I’d imagine a parent writing a letter to the local vicar about the newly published book ‘Under Construction’ (2019) by Neil O Boyle, national director YFC, its a brand new book, and a number of young people might be about to read it. Dear Reverend/Pastor, Thank you for taking the time to read this letter, you may not know me, but I am … Continue reading What if parents actually read the books Christian youth ministry encouraged young people to read?

The Man you’re Made to Be (Martin Saunders, 2019) – A review

Even though I met Martin at the National youth ministry weekend last week, my view of his book has increased in favour since, but not because i forgive him for not taking me out for a coffee, that boy Martin was pretty busy all weekend, and the conference was a good one… (;-)) Back to the book…. Martin has written an engaging, self deprecating at … Continue reading The Man you’re Made to Be (Martin Saunders, 2019) – A review

#NYMW19 – A weekend of great conversations – but which important questions does youth ministry need to ask?

Its almost 48 hours exactly since I got back from Youthscapes (www.youthscape.co.uk)  National Youth Ministry weekend and so I thought I would put pen to paper on a few reflections from it, with a few added and notable caveats. The first is that this was the first time I had attended an English Youth Ministry conference. yup. Well aside from YFC’s own staff jamboree, my … Continue reading #NYMW19 – A weekend of great conversations – but which important questions does youth ministry need to ask?

Should discipleship be ‘action’ first?

Does anyone still use that phrase ; its always the 20% of people in churches that seem to do 80% of all the work? It got banded around for quite a while, though I’ve not heard it recently. It was, at best a passive aggressive way of encouraging people who only sat on pews every week to make more contributions in the life of churches. … Continue reading Should discipleship be ‘action’ first?

In safety first cultures; risk taking is more required in youthworkers than ever before.

It comes as almost no surprise that there has been a backlash to the cultural messages of safety, harm and avoidance of risk that have been prevalent in culture, and also I might add the church over the last few decades. Talk now in youth ministry is of taking risks with young people.  Or maybe more pertinently, talk is of ensuring that risks are important … Continue reading In safety first cultures; risk taking is more required in youthworkers than ever before.

A practical prod to help churches be places where young people flourish, my review of ‘Adoptive Church’ (2018)

I have had a copy of Chap Clarks ‘Adoptive Church’ for over a month now, sent to me to write a review of it, for this blog, its a bit of an odd book to try and write a review of, that’s not to say that it is without merit, some very interesting points, but I guess for me, a book that only has a … Continue reading A practical prod to help churches be places where young people flourish, my review of ‘Adoptive Church’ (2018)

‘But we ‘only’ have a few young people..’ – is youth discipleship better done small?

Only this, Only that, Only the other, If we ‘only’…  It is one of my pet hates, got to admit it. As I travel around and have conversations with church leaders, ministers and volunteers. When describing their project, their groups, their young people, there is a tendency to use the word ‘only’. It can occur in ‘ we ‘only’ have a few young people in … Continue reading ‘But we ‘only’ have a few young people..’ – is youth discipleship better done small?

Voluntary participation; The perilous pathway for the youthworker and minister to navigate

A couple of questions to start off with: Why do young people attend youth provision? and What keeps them there? In all the afterschool, weekend or evening youth provision that occurs outside of the remit of the education or justice system, these are crucial critical questions to ask about young people and why they attend the youth group, the club, the football team, the music … Continue reading Voluntary participation; The perilous pathway for the youthworker and minister to navigate

Is our concept of participation, in youth ministry, too small?

Why is it that young people are often involved in committees at schools, as young as primary school, given responsibility in ‘anti-bullying’ campaigns, tasked with being peer mentors, and encouraged to have their view on school councils within school – and yet in churches they’re often just given a picture to colour in and an activity to do?  Thats a statement I say alot. And … Continue reading Is our concept of participation, in youth ministry, too small?

How might space be created for discipleship growth in our churches?

I dont do gardening. At least I am in denial that I might be ‘doing gardening’, its more ‘being self sufficient’ trying to live closer to nature, and a whole host of other things that it might be known as , but it isnt gardening. So, that thing that I have been doing the last few years, not gardening, came about as I in herited … Continue reading How might space be created for discipleship growth in our churches?