Many churches only have one or two Secondary school age young people as part of their Sunday congregation. This often has two effects:
- The church doesn’t feel able to put too many resources into working with these young people; and,
- The young people themselves feel isolated
Added to this is the issue that many churches have difficulty finding volunteers to work with this age group – although Sunday School/Junior Church do not face this difficulty, once children become (or identify themselves as) ‘young people’ the relevance of SS/JC tails off.
So a ‘Gathered Youth Group’ invites ‘the isolated few’ from a number of churches to meet together and develop a fellowship. This is NOT necessarily an alternative to traditional church, but an opportunity for them to grow and develop with their peers. The sessions (nominally one per half term) rotate through the various churches so that, at each session, there are some young people who are on ‘home turf’. The hosting church also provides primary adult support for the session (although adults who brought young people to the venue would also play a role in adult staffing, if they stayed)
The sessions last approximately 1-1.25 hours and are at a time that was most suitable for, and decided by, the majority of the young people.
Session planning and input:
Sessions are planned and delivered, primarily, by the Synod CYDO – Leo Roberts. He takes responsibility for preparing all resources. Host churches are responsible for refreshments.
The sessions are a mix of fun and fellowship… with games, activities, conversation and debate.
If you would like to explore this idea more, please contact Leo.