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Youth Ministry

This collection provides resources in developing and sustaining a youth ministry program.


3 Resources
Challenges in Youth Ministry
Curator Mark Oestreicher
8 resources
Youth Ministry Tools
Curator Ben Tapper
5 resources
Creative Ideas for Youth Ministry
Curator Kelly Minas
9 resources


2 Resources
Sticky Faith
This organization provides resources for youth ministers, congregations, and parents to help...
Sustainable Youth Ministry: Why Most Youth Ministry Doesn't Last and What Your Church Can Do...
This resource acts as a guide for congregations struggling with youth ministry, presenting a...


Kara Faris

Kara Faris is the Center’s director of resource grants and resource consulting, as well as a resource consultant to congregations. She previously served for eight years as the Center’s education director.

Before working at the Center, Kara served First Friends Meeting of Indianapolis as associate pastor. With a degree in marketing from Butler University’s College of Business Administration and a master of divinity degree from Christian Theological Seminary, Kara brings a blend of pragmatism, intuition and passion for lifelong learning to the Center. Kara has authored Including Laity in Education Events Empowers Congregations and co-authored the book Divergent Church.

Youth Ministry Resources

When looking for a way to grow a congregation, it might be good to make sure to reach out to the younger population. Unfortunately, one of the biggest challenges that religious groups often find themselves facing today is that they are having a difficult time connecting with the younger generation. Today's youth can sometimes be known for having short attention spans. And thanks to rapid innovation in technology, such as video games, TV shows, and social media, it can be easy for a lot of children to become completely disconnected from the congregation. Therefore, in order to make sure to communicate effectively with the younger population, a good first step might be considering taking advantage of all of the youth ministry resources that are available out there.

The good news is that religious groups are well-aware that they are having difficulty in communicating with younger individuals. Thankfully, though, there are lots of powerful resources for youth leaders available. It can be good for leaders of congregations to make use of these resources, because the younger population is likely going to be the foundation of their congregation for years to come. For example, a lot of resources are going to help youth ministry leaders communicate with children, teenagers, and young adults in their congregation. By learning to do this, they will be more able to effectively speak their language and share with them the importance of their ministry in the modern era.

When looking for youth ministry help, it can be good to know that there are plenty of ways in which youth ministry leaders might be able to effectively generate small group sessions, youth outreach events, and even encourage the younger generation to join the congregation on a regular basis. It can also be a good idea to put together a firm strategy, when it comes to communicating with the younger generation. There are several key points that may be good to keep in mind, when religious leaders are trying to improve the way they interact with the young people who are members of their congregations.

Youth Ministry Ideas

There are lots of leaders who are looking for youth ministry ideas and youth ministry lessons. With creative ideas in youth ministry, religious leaders will be going a long way toward having a lot more success in communicating with the younger generation.

One of the first things congregations may consider doing is making sure that they use social media. This can be one of the most powerful tools they have in their arsenal. There are hundreds of millions of people who use social media on a regular basis. A lot of them are children, teenagers, and young adults - and as result, churches and other religious organizations which are looking for ways to communicate with the younger generation can do well to make sure that they begin putting social media to use. They might post pictures, videos, and information on upcoming events, and then follow up by encouraging younger people in the community to try and attend.

Second, when it comes to communicating with the younger generation, it could be a good idea to keep it short and sweet. People will generally only have a few seconds to grab the attention of their audience - and this can often particularly be true with children. Therefore, it might be a good idea for religious organizations to try and keep their flyers, videos, images, and posts short, sweet, and to the point. Ensuring that their material is succinct may dramatically improve the response rate and engagement rate among the younger crowd.

Finally, religious organizations which are looking for ways to improve their ability to communicate with the younger generation might consider talking with some of the kids who are members of their congregation, in an effort to figure out what the congregation can be doing differently to communicate with their peers. The reality is that the younger generation is likely going to pay much more attention to their peers than they are to religious leaders. With this in mind, congregations that are looking to improve their success rates may do well to try and communicate with some of the kids who are already in their congregation, and possibly begin putting some of these ideas to use.

There are plenty of ideas that religious organizations can employ, if they are looking for ways to communicate better with the younger generation. By getting creative, it can be possible for congregations to more successfully get younger people involved in their sermons, outreach events, and small groups.

Online Youth Ministry

As alluded to above, a lot of younger people can be found to use the internet quite frequently, staying always active on social media, using their phones to browse the internet, and communicating with friends, family members, and professional colleagues online as well. Therefore, if religious groups would like to find ways to connect more with the younger generation, it may prove to be a great idea to leverage online youth ministry.

There are lots of youth ministry organizations out there that are successfully putting virtual youth ministry to use. One of the most popular ways in which religious organizations can use online youth ministry is to generate small groups in the online setting. Thanks to advances in videoconferencing technology, it is possible to hold small group meetings in a virtual manner. For instance, a lot of children will travel on a regular basis for music events or athletic events - and some members of the congregation might go to another location for college. Even when the younger generation is traveling, though, it is still possible to attend small groups, thanks to videoconferencing technology.

Furthermore, it is also possible to share videos through online youth ministry. For example, the congregation might come across a helpful sermon or irrelevant video from some other religious organization. Then, if they like, they can use this video and share it with members of their youth congregation online. This can be a great way for them to get their message out in a manner that the younger generation will be able to appreciate.

Finally, worship can represent a key element of youth ministry, as well. The good news is that worship sessions can also be done in the online setting. Of course, it might be a good idea to modernize the music a little bit, so that the younger generation will be better able to acclimate to it. For instance, there are plenty of contemporary artists that the younger generation might enjoy. This is another way in which online youth ministry might be able to be put to good use.

Youth Group Activities

In order for congregations to keep their younger generation involved, setting up youth group activities might prove to be a good idea. Remember, the younger generation might sometimes have very short attention spans. Therefore, it can be a worthy goal to try and keep them engaged as much as possible. One of the top ways to potentially accomplish this is to play a game of “icebreakers”. It is not unusual for youth ministry leaders to have a hard time in getting teenagers to participate - and in this scenario, a simple group activity of icebreakers can be a great way of convincing them to do so. As one of the top youth ministry activities, religious leaders may want to consider turning icebreakers into youth group team games.

It might also be a good idea to try and play youth ministry games as part of outreach events. If youth ministry leaders really want to get their students involved, it can be good to try and find a way to get them to disconnect from their phones. One of the ways to potentially do this is to go on a youth retreat. For example, there might be a lake or a mountain nearby that provides an ideal setting for students to get away from their distractions. Consider taking an outreach trip as a youth group.

Youth Ministry Tools

Youth ministry leaders can also take advantage of the variety of powerful youth ministry tools that are available to them out there. Climates can sometimes change, and congregations that would like to remain relevant in the minds of the younger generation may want to take steps to ensure that they are able to keep up with the times. The good news is that there are plenty of resources available for this.

For instance, it might be helpful to take a look at youth ministry training videos. A lot of religious organizations have published helpful videos that may be able to help youth group leaders to become engaged with the younger generation. By viewing and learning from these videos, it might be possible for religious leaders to then use these tactics when they are trying to put together small groups of their own.

There are also helpful classes that religious leaders can take in regards to digital communication and the online world. The internet is one of the most powerful ways that religious groups can connect with the younger generation, and it could prove to be very beneficial to understand how to use this appropriately.

Youth Ministry Programs

Ultimately, the goal of youth ministry programs is often to share their faith with the younger generation. Once they have engaged, the focus may then shift back to the primary focus of every youth ministry curriculum. The best youth ministry curriculum is likely going to seek to accomplish to keep the younger generation engaged and teach them about the importance of the congregation’s principles and ideas.

Unfortunately, it can sometimes be a challenge to accomplish both goals. There are numerous resources available that can help youth ministry leaders get more out of their small group settings. By using some of the latest tools and equipment that are available today, congregations may become better able to effectively communicate with the younger generation and grow their group.

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