Our Student Ministry’s mission is to provide a safe place for students to connect with fellow believers, grow in their faith, and discover God’s purpose for their lives. This Ministry’s driving focus is to facilitate and guide our students in developing and solidifying their walk with Christ and learning more about God’s plan. As leaders, we are honored and privileged to navigate this walk with them. Our guidance and support with the students is directly pointed at giving God all the Glory.
FORGED meets Wednesday night here at LifeChurch from 6:30pm-8:30pm.
The youth group starts the night off with group games in the auditorium full of faith, fun and friendships. We then split into Middle School and High School groups for lessons presented by the leaders. Each group has at least 4 leaders to support the students with content knowledge, mentoring and navigating what it means to be a teen.
Throughout the year we do special events such as lock-ins, snow tubing, 30 Days of Service, the 30 Hour Famine, Food Drives, Christmas Parties and much more.
During the summer we run a Summer Series where all our meetings are outdoors at various local spots. We play massive games of kickball, nine square, we have Color Wars, nights at the beach and the ever popular 100 foot long inflatable obstacle course!!
Camps: Twice a year when the opportunity is available, we do a winter and summer camp at Monadnock Christian Ministries in Jaffery, NH Monadnock Christian Ministries The winter camp is a weekend long excursion- Friday night through Sunday afternoon. The summer camp is a week-long journey packed full of exciting opportunities, deep rooted faith and a massive mountain to climb!!
youthministry.com wrote an article about
“What Impact Do Youth Groups Have?”
Based on these four basic truths about religion’s influence, I set out to discover how youth groups could be a catalyst for better life outcomes. I analyzed data from the National Study of Youth and Religion (NSYR), looking first at the second wave of the study, when the participating teenagers were ages 16-20.
1. Teenagers in youth groups experience greater levels of adult support. The results of the NSYR show that “youth groupies” are more comfortable talking to adults and have more supportive adults available than their non-groupie peers. Youth groupies also have more supportive adults within their church than those who’ve attended services but not youth group.
However, when I tracked these “wave two” kids back a few years and studied their answers to the “wave one” questions, I discovered that they already had more supportive adults in their lives when they entered the study than their non-youth-groupie peers. This may mean that they joined youth group in the first place because they already felt supported by adults. It also looks like the main reason kids in youth groups feel more comfortable turning to adults for support is because they’ve attended religious services, not because they’ve belonged to a youth group.
2. Teenagers in youth groups have more connections to church. As another measure of social support, I also looked at whether young people felt connected to their church and how likely it would be for them to continue attending church as they got older. I looked at four measures of church connection, and discovered that youth groupies, again, had more connections to church than their religious-but-non-youth-groupie peers did. Even after taking into account their religious tradition, race or ethnicity, economic background, parents’ education level, and parental relationship stability, youth groupies are more likely to say church makes them think about important things and isn’t boring. They’re also more likely to say they think they will still be attending church when they’re 25, and if it was totally up to them they’d still choose to come to church. These findings show that youth groups do encourage kids to stay committed to church over the course of their life.
But again, after I studied how the study participants answered the “wave one” questions when they were younger, I discovered that kids who already had more and stronger connections to the church gravitated to the church’s youth group—the “greater connection” influence seems largely due to self-selection (the idea that people choose the groups that they join based on some underlying quality, like being more social). Also, it turns out that “attending religious services” is the main reason kids say that church makes them think about important issues, not their participation in youth group. And, more sobering, youth groupies who also attended a church youth group when they were younger are actually more likely to say that church is boring than those who didn’t attend when they were younger.
3. Teenagers in youth groups show a stronger moral backbone. When I looked at six measures of moral values, I found that youth groupies are less likely to lie to their parents and to do things they hoped their parents would not find out about than their non-youth-groupie peers. They’re also more likely to agree that…
• morality is not relative,
• what is morally right or wrong should be based on God’s law,
• it’s not okay to break moral rules if it works to your advantage, and
• religion is important in shaping their daily life.
Youth groups do help teenagers believe in moral values. But those beliefs don’t always translate to their behavior—kids who’ve attended youth group throughout their teenage years are actually more likely to lie to and keep secrets from their parents than those who haven’t!
Does youth group make a positive, long-term difference in teenagers’ lives? Absolutely. But it appears that youth group is good at producing some positive outcomes, but not others. The results of the NSYR suggest that participation in the greater life of the church is often just as important as youth-group participation. In the end, it’s a both/and story—youth groups excel in teaching kids moral beliefs and in “hooking” them into long-term churchgoing habits, but the congregation as a whole has a crucial role to play in helping them navigate their adolescence into the adult “promised land.”