Introducing 3 aims for every youth work practice

Shall we start with a reality check? There is no magic answer, solution, gravy train, resource, method, model for youth work and ministry. There really isn’t. Anyone telling you this is merely on the hard sell, of their particular brand, style, event or model. Anyone telling you this is is hoping that they have it, that they experienced it and they’re clinging on to keep … Continue reading Introducing 3 aims for every youth work practice

What Role do you want young people to have in church?

For the majority of churches, the idea of having any young people being part of the church is a bit of a luxury. The task for many is to find them, attract them, and often this task has seemed to have fallen to the ‘christian organisation’ such as YFC, YMCA or FYT – the challenge where this happens is how the integration from organisation to … Continue reading What Role do you want young people to have in church?

What if our youth practices are the trigger for young peoples challenging behaviour?

When i was delivering detached youthwork a few years ago and develop thinking about young people and their alcohol misuse, i developed (though probably more likely lifted from other similar processes) a diagram which tried to explain it that looked a bit like this : (excuse the quality, its a photo from a power point screen, i didn’t have publisher to develop it originally) A … Continue reading What if our youth practices are the trigger for young peoples challenging behaviour?

Young people need autonomy and connectedness, can Christian youthwork provide it?

I Saw this on social media the other day: A great tension for young people is their desire to be a part of something bigger than themselves while making their own rules. Impossible. (Michael Wear) Think about it for a moment, then think about what being a young person was like for you in regard to these two things. At the point of wondering about … Continue reading Young people need autonomy and connectedness, can Christian youthwork provide it?

Forget growth strategies for church & youth ministry; meet (young) peoples needs.

I am happy to be corrected by this. But I am struggling to remember an occasion in the last few years where a church or youth ministry organisation who has adopted or created a strategy for growth, has included the notion of ‘meeting peoples needs’. I wonder if this has been bypassed somewhat; for the sake of ‘evangelism strategy’, or ‘social action project’ or ‘organisation … Continue reading Forget growth strategies for church & youth ministry; meet (young) peoples needs.

Rethinking young people and ‘low self esteem’

These Young People have just such low self esteem!   This week I have been attending a 3-day block of lectures on Psychology and Christianity as part of my MA course at Durham University. It has been absolutely fascinating. During the three days each of the 17 of us in the room have been given the chance to present to the others a 20 minute presentation … Continue reading Rethinking young people and ‘low self esteem’

Youthwork: the importance of developing young peoples narrative identities

Johanna Wyn and Rob White say something, i think, quite profound about the views of adolescent development; one that certainly youthworkers in faith based settings, and schools should reflect on, they propose that: a relational concept of youth offers an approach to understanding the social meaning of growing up that can take into account the diverse ways in which young people are constructed through social institutions, … Continue reading Youthwork: the importance of developing young peoples narrative identities

The emotional reality of the exits in Youthwork and Ministry

Sometimes i wonder if the way in which young people are treated we think that they are some kind of alien species. Often it is because various institutions and maybe even youthworkers to justify their own existence and specialism, have created a narrative about young people that gives them special status, using terms like transition, or identity, or others to describe the age group. However, i … Continue reading The emotional reality of the exits in Youthwork and Ministry

What motivates a young person to stay in the youth ministry & the church?

Quite a few years ago now I was involved in a Mentoring Project in Scotland, I am involved in one now at DYFC but just the managing of it. One of the key aspects of the mentoring work, and it was largely short term relationships in which my role was to mentor a young person, often referred by a school, was to try and set … Continue reading What motivates a young person to stay in the youth ministry & the church?