Before I joined my present employment as youth worker at south beach baptist church in saltcoats, I worked part time for a small church of Scotland in Mauchline. Our Sunday night youth fellowship ground had a grand total of five young people and so I had to restructure how I ‘did’ YF.
I was brought up with the mini church service still of YF. You would have an intro/ icebreaker, followed by some songs, a short talk and then maybe a discussion group.
I knew that with the small number we had I couldn’t rely on that structure and so by default, the group became very interactive.
Skip forward 12 months. After several people’s recommendations, I’ve started reading “deep church” by Jim Belcher (a fantastic book that I would encourage you to read if you haven’t already). I was reminded of my passion for reinventing groups to make them more interactive and more young people driven and led.
But I look at the YF we run at south beach and I get a little depressed. Rather than being dynamic, its fallen back into the mini church service still where, for the majority of the time, the young people face the front and listen. Yes, they interact a little but not a huge amount.
Should YF be like this? I mean, I have issues with the way the church service is done because it is all led by a select few from the front. Christian education is reduced to listening to a talk for twenty minutes and that’s it. This isn’t how Jesus modelled discipleship but how else would you do it?
I’ve put an online questionnaire out to all of the young people to find out what they like/ don’t like about YF and what could make it better. Over the Summer, I want to come before God and hear his heart for the group. Is there a different style that would work?
What are people’s own thoughts about it? How do you guys structure your youth fellowship meetings? Is it all about the young people listening to a talk and being ‘educated’ or do you guys do something different?
Please leave your comments.