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Teens Leaving Church But Going To The Theater

by Youth Specialties Posted in Articles

You’ve read the stats – according to Barna, 40 percent of people aged 19-30 have walked away from faith.  Youth workers are looking for ways to connect with students – and it’s no secret that sometimes the best place is on their turf.  That’s the thinking behind the upcoming event SURGE, in theaters October 9 and October 16.


The Art of Shutting Up

by Jonathan McKee Posted in ArticlesAdviceYouth Worker Development

I’ve got a big mouth. Always have. When I was young, I actually had people ask me, “Do you ever shut up?” You’ve most likely encountered people like this. If they never learned to be quiet and listen to others, chances are they aren’t very fun to be around. No…Read More


Connecting with Students

by Jonathan McKee Posted in ArticlesFeatured ArticleHigh SchoolProgrammingTrainingYouth Worker Development

Last month a student from the high school just down the street from me excused himself from class about 10:15 a.m., walked into a restroom, and shot himself. It was his 17th birthday.  


How Do I See Myself After High School?: A Sticky Faith Free Download Lesson

by Youth Specialties Posted in Adolescent DevelopmentArticlesFree ResourcesHigh SchoolMiddle SchoolParentsProgramming

Many of the statistics you read about teenagers and faith can be alarming. Recent studies show that 40-50 percent of kids who are connected to a youth group throughout their senior year will fail to stick with their faith in college. As youth workers are pouring their time and energy into the students in their ministries, they are often left wondering if they've done enough to equip their students to carry their faith into adulthood.


The 3 Foundations to Small Groups You Must Know

by Laurie Polich Posted in Adolescent DevelopmentArticlesAdviceFeatured ArticleFeatured ReviewHigh SchoolMiddle SchoolParentsProgrammingResource and Book ReviewsTrainingYouth Worker Development

Small groups are not the end of ministry; they are the beginning. Many youth workers believe that if they can get kids into small groups, their job is done. But the real job has just begun. Ministry is about life change, and for this to happen, there needs to be an intentional ap- proach to HOW small groups will nurture and shape students’ lives.   Exerpt from "Small Group Strategies" by Laurie Polich


Helping Teenagers in Crisis

by Youth Specialties Posted in Adolescent DevelopmentArticlesAdviceFree ResourcesProgrammingTrainingYouth Worker Development

When teens hurt, youth workers are often the first to know. When parents panic or worry about their children, they are the first to be called, and when tragedy strikes a community, they are the pillars many look to communicate how students should process and confront challenging and life-changing situations.


Waking Up From The American Dream

by Jonathan McKee Posted in Adolescent DevelopmentArticlesAdviceFeatured ArticleFree ResourcesHigh SchoolMiddle SchoolMovie Study GuidesParentsProgrammingResource and Book ReviewsTrainingYouth Worker Development

It was over a decade ago. The kids were young. Ashley was still in diapers. We attended a wealthy church where most of our friends had loads of spending money in their pockets. We didn’t.


After the Altar Call

by David R Smith Posted in Adolescent DevelopmentArticlesAdviceFeatured ArticleFree ResourcesHigh SchoolMiddle SchoolParentsProgrammingTrainingYouth Worker Development

There are many potential mistakes that can ruin an altar call and negatively affect a teenager’s decision to follow Christ. And though all of us have made these errors from time to time, the good news is, we don’t have to ever again! Here are the seven biggest mistakes youth ministry leaders make during altar calls…and a few simple ways to correct them.


5 Ways to Value a Youth Ministry Volunteer’s Time

by Aaron Helman Posted in ColumnsArticlesAdviceFeatured ArticleHigh SchoolMiddle SchoolProgrammingTrainingYouth Worker Development

Your volunteers are busy people just like you. They have families and jobs and their own relationships with God. After juggling all of those things, they still manage to help you lead a thriving ministry. My guess is you want them to continue to do that for quite some time. The fastest way to drive away good volunteers is to waste their time. That's why you need to be intentional about making sure you don't.


YS Listens - What Did We Hear?

Posted in Adolescent DevelopmentArticlesAdviceFeatured ArticleFree ResourcesProgrammingTrainingYouth Worker Development

We encourage you to talk about some of the things we discovered--either in your own ministry, your own community, or with the youth ministry community across the country. Check out the YS Network to learn more about how you can connect with youth workers from all over the U.S.


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