youth ministry thoughts

Blog posts about youth ministry

26 11, 2019

Book review: Before the Screen

By |2019-11-26T23:37:51-05:00November 26th, 2019|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

Recently, I (Alvin) finished reading Andrew Zirschky’s book Beyond the Screen: Youth Ministry for the Connected But Alone Generation. This short book highlighted some profound insights on how Generation Z engages social media in the context of community. Some specific insights that caught my attention: One key reason why many youth gravitate to technology is “not primarily for its entertainment value or cool factor, but because of its potential to

22 10, 2018

How do you reach into your community?

By |2018-10-16T21:09:51-04:00October 22nd, 2018|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

How do you reach your community with the person and message of Jesus? After all, that’s the primary reason why the church exists: to go and make disciples of all nations. What are ways to do that? There are many ways a church can reach into a community. Here are a few considerations:   Where does the neighbourhood gather? Some communities already have established times when people gather. It could

15 10, 2018

Renegotiating Faith (part 2)

By |2018-10-12T14:46:08-04:00October 15th, 2018|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

We continue looking at some observations Renegotiating Faith highlighted its report. (Click here for Part One.) Young adults who went straight into postsecondary studies fared worse on all our measures of religious persistence than those who had taken a gap year. (p.11) I (Alvin) remember that in high school the big push was to graduate and go straight on to university. A gap year was seen as a form of

28 02, 2015

In Another World

By |2015-02-28T04:27:18-05:00February 28th, 2015|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

Stepping into another culture can have a profound impact on one's faith. For those who have grown up in a Christian environment, we can easily assume "this is what faith is". But when we step into another "world", our faith can be challenged ... and shaped for the better. Next week, a team of 29 students and leaders from four churches (First Baptist Church in Smiths Falls, Glen Acres Baptist

13 02, 2015

Where is your ministry at … right now?

By |2016-10-31T13:57:17-04:00February 13th, 2015|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

Sometimes, in the midst of leading a ministry, seldom do we get a chance to take a step back to see what's happening at that moment ... unless we intentionally do so. Whether we like it or not, things change and things evolve. But if we don't take that step back every so often, the changes/evolutions happen right under our nose. Last year, we launched the ministry audit. While it

24 01, 2015

Distinguishing Youth Ministry

By |2016-10-31T13:57:17-04:00January 24th, 2015|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|1 Comment

Ask a church their definition of "youth ministry", you'll probably get a variety of responses. Many define it as a program where youth are the target audience. Others emphasize mentoring and relationships with youth. Recently, some are expanding it to be family ministries i.e. ministering to parents and their families. Over the last few months, I've (Alvin) recognized there is a distinction between youth ministry and a church's reponse to

7 01, 2015

The Big Push

By |2015-01-07T04:37:19-05:00January 7th, 2015|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

In the next nine weeks, I'll be involved in 3 retreats, 1 leadership conference, organizing 1 Compassion Experience and a Raptors outreach event (plus we'll throw in 3 church consultations). This is our high season at CBOQ Youth. In the midst of the organized chaos, God gave me a reminder from a devotion shared by Gloria Stafford at our last Avalanche planning meeting based on Ephesians 3:14-21. The one phrase

2 12, 2014

A Baptistic Principle in Youth Ministry

By |2014-12-02T16:42:04-05:00December 2nd, 2014|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

One Baptistic value we hold is "association". While every church has its own autonomy and can individually discern where God is leading them, many congregations recognize they can't do everything by themselves. Even the formation of our area associations and CBOQ itself is based on this. Two specific examples of association are our CBOQ Youth retreats and Centre Court events. Retreats like Avalanche and Blizzard require a certain critical mass

26 11, 2014

Is your Advent synonymous with "busyness"?

By |2014-11-26T20:06:18-05:00November 26th, 2014|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

As Advent approaches, I usually hear from our youth leaders this is one of the busiest times of year. (For us at CBOQ Youth, it's actually a slower time because no one really needs us.) While celebrations and other activities take time and energy to plan, I wonder if it becomes over-programmed. For instance, ask yourself some of these questions: As you enter December, do you feel more strained or

20 11, 2014

A National Voice

By |2014-11-20T16:31:29-05:00November 20th, 2014|Alvin Lau, youth ministry thoughts|0 Comments

Last week, directors from our Canadian Baptist partners in youth and family gathered. These semiannual meetings aren't just to catch up. They are times to discern how we can come together at a national level with discernment from the Holy Spirit. CB Youth and Family's mandate is to advocate and make possible national and global synergies in the areas of youth, family and young adult ministry. Some elements that we

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