First Church’s Young People’s Ministries invites you & your family to join us Sundays at 9 AM for Education Hour!
Keeping it Relevant. Keeping it Rooted, Keeping it Real.
A Letter from Jonathyn Kraig, Director of Young People’s Ministries:
One of my first priorities as the new Director of Young People’s Ministries was to meet with all the different stakeholders that make up the First Church youth ministry. I wanted to hear directly from them who we are, what we do, and why we do it. I met with parents, teachers, our former pastor, Rev. Sharon Moe, and our new pastor, Rev. Jeremy Smith, and of course the young people themselves. What I came away with was the clear message that solid Methodist theology and tradition is necessary and needs a strong emphasis. Linked to this idea I heard almost unanimously a desire for obvious and meaningful relationship between tradition and the world we live in today.
The middle and high school students were vocal about the desire and need for First Church to have a youth ministry that they can personally invest in because it speaks to what they observe and experience on a daily basis. They don’t want to sit in Sunday school and ignore some of the harsh realities that they witness in the world around us. The feedback I received became the driving force behind my programming decisions.
The middle and high school students . . . don’t want to sit in Sunday school and ignore some of the harsh realities that they witness in the world around us.
I kept reflecting on the messages I heard and eventually saw a theme that would concisely bring everything together. “Keeping it Relevant, Keeping it Rooted, Keeping it Real!” Finding curriculum that supports this theme was critical and I was thrilled to find the “LinC” curriculum for our Middle and High school students. “LinC” helps young people examine relevant faith and life issues using contemporary music, movies, news, current events and Bible study. The goal is to equip young people to evaluate their world from a biblical perspective.
Something that members of the First Church community may already have noticed is the increased visibility and participation of our youth within our community. Our youth have joined other planning committees such as Hospitality, All-Church Retreat, and Church Council. In addition we have filled the position of Youth Council Member on the Church council for the first time in over seven years!
I see youth participation as another facet to keeping our youth ministry REAL. Afterall, without our young people, how can the church be Rooted, Relevant, and Real?