New (ok well just reworded) Mission Statement: Love God. Love Others. Do Stuff. I totally go this from a message a friend sent me. But it struck me that it was simple and direct. And to be honest it is just another way to say Living Lord's mission of "Connecting with God, Connecting with Others. Connecting with what God is doing in the world." It also is our new curriculum plan. Our three year rotation plan is now set to follow a different part of the mission. So in 2016 we will be focusing (but not solely) on Love God and what that all entails.
It's About Relationships: It is about as basic a concept in youth ministry and faith but sometimes it gets lost in the mix. So we are going to try and spend more time on this: building up relationship and having contact with our youth. We will be stressing retreats, trip and Leadership Lab a bit more. We are also starting a weekly prayer list. Each week we will be praying for 10 youth and notifying them by mail they are on our prayer list for the week. We are inviting them to let us kow if they have special prayer requests. In addition, parents will get a email asking them to do the same. It is hard to believe but sometimes kids are not as forthcoming with what they are struggling with. We will also be hosting more opportunities for youth to just gather and talk about stuff.
Bring in the Parents: Many of you know we did a survey this fall of the parents and youth. One thing that came out of this survey is that a majority of parents felt ill-equipped to serve as the primary faith former for their kids. We want to change this. You, as parents should be the primary faith formers. You have way more time (or SHOULD have more time) with your kids than I would ever. So we are going to begin hosting monthly information sessions during Confirmation class time for parents to come and explore new and better ways to engage their kids in their faith journey. We are currently working up the schedule and would love to hear any insights on what you would like to see offered.
Improved Social Media: We started filming confirmation classes recently and it seems to be a big hit. We are looking at other ways to engage our kids daily in social media via Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, etc. the kids live in theses electronic spaces so it we can reach them for just a few minutes each day IN THAT SPACE, we are talking 365 more times we get to engage them in their faith. In a somewhat related way, I am also looking at easier ways for people to sign up for things as mass emailings and sorting through the responses can be somewhat time consuming, frustrating, and error prone.
Have a Happy New Year!