A Vision for effective Youth Ministry
A Vision for effective Youth Ministry - Insights from Australian Research
Many young Australians are struggling with issues of mental health, anxiety about the future, and addictions to drugs. Behind these struggles are often questions of what life is all about. Youth ministry is more important today than at any time in recent history. Yet, many churches are finding it difficult to connect with youth beyond those whose families are involved in the church.
This book has arisen out of Australian research into youth ministry, from visiting youth groups and talking with youth leaders and the youth themselves. It offers a vision for the development of youth ministry, recognising the diversity of youth and the backgrounds from which they come.
It explores how to build a youth ministry team and the qualities needed in the team. It discusses issues of training, payment, and support for youth leaders and building bridges with parents, church and school.
What are the factors which will really make a difference in developing youth ministry? Based on research, our conclusions are:
The vision for developing the spirit of young people
The commitment of the whole church to youth ministry
The youth ministry team with strong relationships with God, each other, the youth, parents, the church and the wider society;
A diversity of activities: both age-specific and intergenerational for fun, friends, inquiry and developing the spirit.
Rev Dr Philip Hughes has had pastoral experience in inner city, suburban and rural churches, and has been the senior research officer of the Christian Research Association since 1985. He has two adult children and one grandchild.
Stephen Reid has worked for the Christian Research Association since 2007 and has one teenage child and two younger children.
Margaret Fraser has worked for the Christian Research Association since 2011. She has two children who are completing university and two who are teenagers.
All three authors were involved in interviews with youth, youth leaders, clergy and parents for this study.