"We crave resolution. Yet as Christians, we must learn to live in the tension of the unresolved. It is in these unstable, unsettling spaces that deep faith and spiritual maturity often emerge and develop. It is also in these unresolved spaces that young people need us most."
"You can bet silos are alive and well in your church when you find yourself battling with other ministry leaders for volunteers (as opposed to thinking through the best fit for that volunteer based on his or her gifts and interests), caring more about weekly attendance numbers in your own ministry than the overall thriving of your congregation, or perhaps praying the worship leader in your church gets a new job offer so you can finally make some updates to music. The list could go on and on. To break down silos and move the work of growing young from a youth ministry conversation to the overall church, here are three practical suggestions..."
"The Synod’s primary aim is to make the whole Church aware of her important and not at all optional task of accompanying every young person, without exclusion, towards the joy of love; secondly, by taking this mission seriously, the Church herself will be able to reacquire a renewed youthful dynamism; thirdly, it is also important for the Church to take this opportunity to carry out vocational discernment, so as to rediscover how she can best respond today to the call to be the soul, light, salt and leaven of our world."
"A leading expert on pastoral theology has underscored that the Catholic Church must quickly and effectively engage young Catholics through dialogue, awareness, listening, respect, humility, patience and creativity — or its future looks dim"
An interesting perspective on why Millenials do not feel comfortable with church. This opinion piece is written by an American from an evangelical perspective.
What keeps "millenials" in the the parish community? Is this your experience?
"Congregations that succeed in nurturing the faith of young people tend to demonstrate certain key characteristics. What are the top characteristics of a healthy youth ministry?"
Oregon Catholic Press offers excellent suggestions for choosing music that suits a multigeneration parish.
Oregon Catholic Press offers suggestions for introducing new music in the Sunday liturgy as a way of helping parish communities grow! These are great tips for introducing music that is welcoming to young people and new and established parishioners.
Over 300 young people representing countries from around the world, gathered in Rome in March to discuss the upcoming Synod of Bishops "Young People, Faith, and Vocational Discernment". Australia's representative, Angela Markas, addressed the meeting on the first day. The young representatives provided insight into the lives of young people across the globe, their challenges and hopes for the world. They also provided recommendations for the Synod of Bishops in October.
The representatives also produced a document (which included the input of over 15,000 young people on Facebook). Click here to read the document.
Last month new research about why young people are leaving the Church was released in the US. One of the co-authors of the report "Going, Going, Gone", John Vitek, was in Australia and presented the research at the Australian Catholic Youth and Youth Ministry Research Seminar. While the research was focused on American youth, there are many similarities with the Australian Church.
Last month we kicked off the Year of Youth in the Archdiocese of Adelaide. We didn't do it with a gigantic youth festival, concert or rally. Instead, we gathered leaders from the Catholic Church in parishes, school, communities, agencies and other sectors to learn about the Year of Youth and the realities facing young people in South Australia. The 135 participants in attendance reflected on what they heard, conversed, and began taking steps to make responsive plans in their own contexts.