Many years ago the church council of Grace adopted a mission statement that included a specific clause about youth ministry: "We desire growth as an inclusive intergenerational family; we resolve to support a strong youth ministry." It is important to Grace Lutheran Church and the community of Culver City that we carry on a successful youth group.
The youth group has a model verse for our youth ministry, from Luke 2:52 - Jesus became wise, and he grew strong. God was pleased with him and so were the people. We hope our young people mature as Jesus did, he grow intellectually, physically, spiritually and socially.
At Grace we have many opportunities for Middle School, High School and College students:
Confirmation - 6th to 8th grade kids explore their faith in this lively class of education, fun and fellowship. Tuesdays at 3:00pm.
Afterschool drop in - Monday through Thursday, after school until 5:00pm in the Fireside Room. All students are welcome to read, write, study and just hang out. Computers with Internet and basic school supplies are available for use.
Fellowship events - Call Lisa Skelley, Youth & family Director for upcoming schedule: 310-559-1027.
Grace Diner - Many of the kids who come to Grace also volunteer for this weekly dinner program for our neighbors in need. It's held on Monday nights at 4:30pm and serves about 100 people every week.
Annual Holiday Bazaar - First Friday and Saturday in November. The whole church gathers to collect, price, display and sell fun gift items to the community. The money raised helps support Youth events and activities -- including our free afterschool drop in.
In addition, the youth are included in service projects for local and international needs such as raising funds for hunger programs, community walks, and congregational work days and support.
From the book "The Five Love Languages of Teenagers" by Gary Chapman there is a chapter that deals with the failures of teenagers. He talks about the difficulty dealing with teens when they fail, failure to meet parental expectations or their own moral failure.
He states "good parenting is doing the right thing when a child does the wrong thing." Remember to love the child and not the failure. From Proverbs 12:1 "Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but those who hate to be rebuked are stupid." We all need to learn and gain knowledge, even if it takes a lifetime.
Our youth need our time, words of praise, lots of hugs, time spent in service together, and our prayers. God, please be with our teens and help them to make good decisions and the right choices. Amen