Tag Archive | Youth Service

Creative Youth Meetings

By: Ron Cline

What turns the average young person off about his church youth group?

What happens to the high school youth who quits coming to the youth meetings?

How come a good brush fire draws more teens than our youth group?

Why don’t visitors return and get involved?
Why don’t we attract the sharper teens?

Have you ever “found yourself asking these questions? If you have, keep on asking until you get an answer, and then you’ll begin to sell your group.

Now let’s take a tour of the average Sunday youth program and try to see it as teens do.

Notice, is it alive and creative? Most teens could tell you all about your group even if they have never been to your church. Groups are pretty much the same! you begin by singing songs out of shabby hymnals or coverless chorus books or no books at all. Sometimes you have a pianist, sometimes not. Most of the time you start late. After the songs, you pray, and then welcome the visitors by asking them to stand, and then no one remembers their names. Now come the announcements followed by all kinds of confusion and questions because the program activity has not been well planned or the sponsor is the only person who knows what’s going on. Then comes a short sermon by the sponsor and you go home.

But why not use a little creativity? Let’s redo that program.

Ask several greeters to meet the teens and bring them into the meeting room so that you may start on time. Arrange to have a guest book, a button, a badge, a hat, or something for the visitor. Introduce him to one of the group members who will tell the whole group something about the visitor.

How about some songs? distribute song sheets each week. Or put the songs on large boards or use an overhead projector; write Christian words to pop tunes; for a change speak the words rather than sing
them; sing songs on given themes; sing songs on given themes; sing words to different tunes, e.g., Jesus Loves Me to Christ the Lord Is Risen Today; sometimes don’t sing at all; tape record background music
and use it to sing by, sing along with records; or use musical instruments. Let teens think of ways to improve the song service and don’t be afraid to experiment. It’s possible that anything will be better than what you’re having now.

How about the announcements? That can be a real gas. For some of the teens this will be the best time to catch up on the latest news. How can we make the announcements different? Hang them on a clothesline;
use flash cards; act them out like “charades”; do them with slides; take magazine pictures and put funny captions under them; use of mystery voice; distribute them in printed form as teens enter and ask
different teens to read them; or give only hints and let teens guess in twenty questions; but do use your creativity.

How about attendance? Use name tags; drop tags in a box; sign up by schools on large posters; sign a sheet at the entrance; hand a clipboard around with students listed by school or class.

Next, consider the program–something alive and moving, with relevancy uppermost in mind.

Other things we need to notice: Are we dependable? Do we keep our word? Can our teens believe us? Have we fostered a climate of trust and mutual respect? Is our group organized or is it sloppy? If we make a rule do we keep it? If we make a deal do we hold to it? Do we leave for field trips or other we hold to it? Do we leave for field trips or other activities when we say we will? Do we return home when we promised to? Are we consistent? Are we regular?

Do we have an optimistic attitude? How many times have such statements as these escaped from your mouth? “I don’t know where everybody is”; “I wish the group would be more faithful”; “You’ll never have a group till you support it.”

Why be negative? How about, “Hey, it’s great to see you here tonight. We’re going to have a good time together.” What a difference! Don’t dwell on the small number, the lack of enthusiasm, or the poor
facilities. The group is just what you allow it to become. There is no need to apologize for the group, but build it up, instill some pride, and rejoice in the Lord together. Do something constructive about your
problems, your facilities, or the group itself. Try some thankfulness, pride, enthusiasm, and optimism.

Are we united? The presence of cliques in a youth group is a problem and is difficult to discourage. Try to motivate your teens to pray for each other. Suggest a concerted prayer program for one member of the
group for a whole week. Let teens share a prayer request with a prayer partner. Then the next week allow time for reporting on prayers answered, and exchange partners. Sponsors should join the teens in
this program. Young people who are praying for each other find it hard to dislike each other.

Draw straws or numbers for seats in cars or buses used for transportation to socials or outings. Teens must follow through and sit in the seat drawn. Arrange to have big brothers and big sisters for the new graduates in the group.

At socials divide the teens into teams by such categories as color of eyes, birthdays, initials of names, number of letters in last names, numbers in addresses, and others.

Is what we are doing purposeful? What are the goals of our group? How are we going to realize them? What do we hope to do for the member or the visitor?

When a teenager commits himself to participating in a youth group, he expects it to be just that–not a social cub or a party time but an opportunity for learning about Christian purpose, Christian objectives, and Christian philosophies. Let your youth help in formulating your purpose. Let it be their group.


Be alive and creative
Be dependable
Have an optimistic attitude
Be united
Be purposeful

(The original source of the above material is unknown.)

Christian Information Network

Posted in AIS File Library, YMGE - Youth Ministry0 Comments

Promotional and Announcement Ideas for Youth Ministry

By: Bill Goetz

Through experience in several different churches, we have discovered that basic to an effective youth publicity program is planning over a period of time –at east a quarter. “Spur-of-the-moment’ publicity is
seldom as effective as when it is part of a creative projected plan.

Follow these pre-requisites: Appoint a responsible individual who knows his job. He should consider carefully different methods of publicity, and select those which would be feasible for your group.

Consider these publicity methods: Telephone brigade, special announcements in youth meetings and church, a program of direct mail, a youth newspaper, printed or mimeographed handout items, local
newspaper releases, radio, a special youth fellowship bulletin board or kiosk, poster and other contests.

In a planned publicity program these specific ideas have proved helpful:

Planned interruption announcement. Have two young people prepare to spend several minutes discussing the announcement in an informal conversational way. All the pertinent information on time, place, and
date should be woven into their conversation. During the regular announcement time in your meeting these two should “unexpectedly” walk to the front of the room and break in on the master of ceremonies with their announcement-conversation.

Newsboy. Improvise a newspaper by using a local news sheet and pasting several accounts of the announcement, written in journalistic style, in several spots throughout the paper.

Equip on of the teens with a canvas newsboy’s bag, a cap, a quantity of papers and the special copy. He may enter during announcement time, declaring that he has noticed an item about the group in the paper. He
reads it loudly. After this outburst, he “discovers” a second item which he insists upon reading aloud. A third news release may be read if desired before he is ushered out.

Radio broadcast. The use of a tape recorder and a bit of imagination can lead to an effective announcement. One fellow may record a humorous commercial. This is followed by a second voice: “Now for our news with a difference. Through the amazing worldwide facilities of Radio Youth Fellowship we bring you the news BEFORE IT HAPPENS.” The announcement, in newscaster style, follows.

Poetry. Ask the group poet to put a special announcement into verse form. For a unique announcement embellish it with some background music and an effective rendition.

“Roadside” signs. Letter a line or portion of your announcement (in Burma-Shave fashion) on three or four placards which are then posted at intervals on the way to your meeting room.

“Protest” march. Put the announcement on a number of large placards, staple them to sticks and let a number of the teens march around the room carrying these during announcement time.

Town crier. Ask a teen with a bell to enter the meeting at several appropriate times. He may cry out, “Hear ye, hear ye, hear ye! An announcement will be made here in ____________ minutes.” His final
entry should be to say, “Hear ye! Here’s that announcement you’ve all been waiting to hear.”

Newspaper and radio. Don’t hesitate to send news releases on special events to local newspapers and radio stations. Your items may not be used every time, but often the news media are looking for news of keen
young people. Very often items have been published and broadcast which would never have received notice had they not been taken or sent to the proper place. Note, however, that only really newsworthy items
should be used in such attempts at wider publicity.

A combination of several methods of publicity for extra special events is effective. Handout items, a mail release and a telephone canvass, for example, could be combined in a cone-week effort. We have discovered that in a combination like this it is important that the two or three items be different, and not just a three-fold duplication of a single announcement. A workable idea is to have each publicity item add some new piece of information.

The possibilities of publicizing a youth group are nearly endless. The important thing is to plan which schemes you will utilize and then follow through on your plan.

(The source for the above material is unknown.)

Christian Information Network

Posted in AIS File Library, YMGE - Youth Ministry0 Comments

Sparkling Youth Services

Rex Johnson

I. General feeling about youth services

A. Just for the kids
B. Playing stupid games
C. In a rut
D. No interest
E. Some churches quit having youth services

II. Good youth services don’t just happen

A. Youth Leader must have initiative
B. It takes prayer

1. Far the young people
2. In order to be sensitive to spiritual and social needs

C. It takes planning and searching

1. Every program must be vigorously worked and adapted to fit your specific needs.
2. Foreplan so as to have something different and exciting. Keep out of the program rut!

III. Purpose of a Youth Service

A. Not a Sunday School class
B. Not a preaching service
C. It is an entirely different sort of gathering

1. It meets the needs for spirituality

a. Regardless of type of program planned there must be a time of Holy Ghost worship

2. It meets the needs for expression

a. In a Sunday School class, emphasis is on “taking in”
b. In a Youth Service, emphasis is on “giving out”

1) Youth service should be planned to be youth centered,

a. Youth to take part and be active in service
b. Involve all young people at various times

– Service leader
– Song leader
– Testimony leader
– Offering taker
– Taker prayer requests
– Game leader

3. It meets the needs for training

a. Many song leaders, choir directors or preachers got his or her start in youth service
b. Trains in prayer, soul winning, learning to work with others, & finding one’s place in the church

4. It meets the needs for service

a. Provides opportunity to be of service

1. Preparing a meeting
2. Calling on those who are absent
3. Singing a song
4. Visiting a shut-in

b. Unlocks a door for every young person to feel that he has a part in the kingdom of God

IV. Plan for the Needs

A. No two churches are alike

1. Locality
2. Size

B. Make your plans fit your particular group
C. Calendar plan

1. Services
2. Social activities

a) At least once a month

D. Make plans no matter what the size of your group
E. When working with youth from the outside, size will fluctuate
F. Nucleus is comprised from church young people
G. Plan your work — work your plan

V. Outline your plans

A. Take the guesswork and confusion out of youth service
B. Pray
C. Advertise
D. Decide upon the young people who are to participate
E. Notify all participants

1. Pianist
2. Singers
3. Speakers
4. Ushers
5. etc,

F. Give copies of the outline for the program to those taking leading parts.

1. Keeps things actively moving
2. Eliminates the drag

G. Start on time

VI. What to do

A. Don’t let it get in a rut
B. In order for each service to be well-planned and diversified, there must be idea springboards from which to draw

1. Train your own brain to be an “idea-springboard”

a. You know your group’s needs
b. Start a youth committee; could include

1. Pastor
2. Youth leader
3. Conqueror

c. Brainstorming good with youth committee
d. Ideas can spring around special days

1. Thanksgiving
2. July 4th
3. Graduation
4. etc.

e. Build around a theme

C. Tools

1. Books
2. Files
3. Sunday School lessons

VII. Bible games

A. Bible games turn some people off
B. Merit to Bible games

1. Competition

a. Make sure it is fair
b. The young have just as much chance as the older

2. Sharpens our “sword”

a. Provoke study and thought
b. Knowledge without pain

C. Bible games add zest of variety to your regular programs.
D. Bible games are interesting and enjoyable

VIII. Length of youth service

A. One hour to 1 1/2 hour long
B. Can be controlled only through good planning

(The original source and/or publisher of the above material is

Christian Information Network

Posted in AIS File Library, YMGE - Youth Ministry0 Comments

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