Category Archives: news

time magazine article on youth ministry

wow — even time magazine is jumping on the bandwagon. not a bad article, really — one of the better i’ve seen. no article like this seems able to please on every point — but this one sure is better than the ny times piece!

here’s a taste:

Youth ministers have been on a long and frustrating quest of their own over the past two decades or so. Believing that a message wrapped in pop-culture packaging was the way to attract teens to their flocks, pastors watered down the religious content and boosted the entertainment. But in recent years churches have begun offering their young people a style of religious instruction grounded in Bible study and teachings about the doctrines of their denomination. Their conversion has been sparked by the recognition that sugarcoated Christianity, popular in the 1980s and early ’90s, has caused growing numbers of kids to turn away not just from attending youth-fellowship activities but also from practicing their faith at all.


fascinating post, linked article, and interesting questions…

By mark balfour

From the BBC website today:

Britain is in danger of becoming a nation fearful of its young people, a report has claimed […]

Julia Margot, from the IPPR, told the BBC Radio Five Live: “In Britain, as opposed to countries like Spain and Italy, adults are less likely to socialise with children in the evenings.

“So we don’t have this culture of children hanging out and playing out in the town square where adults are also socialising and drinking.

“We don’t have a culture where adults go out to pubs and bars and bring children with them, and so there is a problem about adults being less used to having children around.”

The 200-page report says that last year more than 1.5 million Britons thought about moving away from their local area due to young people hanging around.

About 1.7 million admitted to avoiding going out after dark as a direct result of youths gathering.

Britons were also three times more likely to cite young people “hanging around” as a problem than they were to complain about noisy neighbours.

What does it mean for young people to grow up as objects of fear?

Time and again, when a group of people within a culture become objects of fear – and easy fodder for media headlines and ugly stereotyping – then violence and oppression are not far behind.

I’m grateful for the youth work we already have at St Peter’s. I’m wondering what more we might be able to do to counter this fear (including ministry to the afraid)?

(ht to bobbie)