Youth Specialties new podcast is online! You can watch the Youtube clip above, or you can download it to your computer by clicking here (to save it, right click the link and select “save target as”). Read more about the podcast on their offical blog. Personally, I love the new format YS has; it’s only the second episode, but it’s great! Devotionals, tips, funny stuff, ideas and more … definitely a youth ministry podcast for the full timers and the volunteers!
Archive for category: Religion (Page 52)
Okay, so technically this is a sermon on something else (belonging), but Marko (Mark Oestricher) gives an absolutely fantastic explanation about adolescence, the history of it, where it’s going, what’s going on with it and more during this sermon. It’s an absolute must listen for youth workers and parents of anyone under thirty. I know I’ll be referencing it in the coming years. Marko is the president of Youth Specialties, and probably one of the more well known voices in the middle school ministry scene – his passion is junior high.
I am very, very excited about this. For a year or two Youth Specialties, one of my favorite youth ministry resource companies out there, had a great podcast. I only had two complaints about it … it only happened once a month, and it stopped a while back. Well, with their new guy Adam McLane on board the Podcast is back and better than ever! The length is shorter (8-12 minutes), it’s all video, and it’s weekly now! Sweet! It’s not on itunes yet, but that’s in the works. You can read more about it on the YS Blog, and find links to download it there as well. You can also watch the first episode on Youtube right here:
This morning was my last service at Boothbay Baptist as a pastor on staff; it was sad saying goodbye to everyone and getting ready to move on. We’ve made some really incredible friends over the last five years here and a lot of tears have already been shed by us and others. During the service, Jason Schlosser surprised us with a tribute video with a lot of memories in it and faces that we won’t forget. I’ve uploaded it – it’s the video above if you want to see it (just click it to play it). I gave a message, which was hard to prepare for – with so much going on and so many emotions floating around, it was a bit of a challenge. After the service we had a potluck and a good time hanging out. Meanwhile, some of the crew was putting together a great album full of letters from people in the church and family photos. They actually set up a couple printers and took pictures of people all morning, printed the photos and put them in the album. It was a great and meaningful surprise and put together really well!
Tomorrow morning the movers are showing up to pack the house … tuesday morning they’ll be back to load it all into their truck and start hauling to Delaware. Wow. Strange to think that 48 hours from now we’ll be on the road to our new beginning!
Hey, Simply Youth Ministry has a great free resource that is available until August 31st, so grab it while you can! It’s the sermon series “Bulls Eye Living.” Normally they only give the first lesson/week as a freebie, so this is a pretty sweet deal where they’re giving away the whole shebang for free. To download it, click here. Here’s the product description:
This is a 4 week downloadable message transcript series. Included in this file are 4 Microsoft word documents containing the full word-for-word message transcripts and student outlines.
Bull’s Eye Living means seeing your life as a target, with your relationship with God in the middle and all other aspects of life as the rings which surround it. An archer wants to hit a bull’s eye; the center of the target is his goal. Through this 4-week series, your students will discover how to determine their own life’s purpose and use that knowledge to focus on the bull’s eye and strip away the things which hold them back from achieving it.
Simply Youth Ministry, a site I happen to be a big fan of when it comes to youth ministry resources, has come out with a great new resource that I’ve signed up for: SimplyTXT. Basically, it’s a great tool for doing mass text messages to students’ cell phones. Many teens nowadays don’t bother with email, snail mail, or any other kind of mail … but they text message like crazy. For me, this is an awesome way to blast out reminders about events, meetings, sign up deadline reminders, or even goofy trivia or game contests. Youth culture is a constantly changing scene, and at the moment text messaging is the way to go. If you want, watch the video below to learn more about it (I don’t know why the graphic is freakishly large, just click on it and it will be normal size) – and at the moment, there’s a deal going on where you can try it out for a month FREE! Yes, I’m still going to use Facebook, Myspace and email – but where I’m heading into a larger youth group, using multiple ways of contacting kids just increases the chances of them getting the word on time!
The above video is a film I put together back in 2005 (half a year before going on Biggest Loser, so yes, I’m looking a bit heavier in it). It’s about a trip to Uganda that I led; there were twenty of us that left from Boothbay to build a home for Aids orphans and work with Watoto Childcare Ministries. It was a powerful experience and the work that is going on there is certainly incredible.
I have to confess, as a hobby I enjoy playing with video editting, and this particular film has been my biggest undertaking. 95% of the footage is mine (I filmed about 12-14 hours worth while there), there are a few minutes worth of footage from other team members. And many of the photos were taken by me as well; all but three of the photos were taken by team members from Boothbay Baptist. Sometimes people are surprised to find out that yes, we did get those close ups of the animals! The safari was AMAZING! I haven’t been able to share it online previously because of its length (Youtube has a ten minute limit), but my discovery of blip.tv (thanks, Josh!), I can now share it in its entirety! Enjoy!
Vacation Bible School is a wrap! What a week … it’s been crazy! My kids had a blast, though. Micah and Caleb were old enough to participate every day. Noah, at two and a half, is technically too young but I brought him along a few of the days to give Heather a break. Basically he just followed me around and had a blast being my shadow. : ) I think the biggest challenge of the week was all the rain. Sheesh. Nothing like 50+ hyper kids all cooped up inside a building because it’s pouring out!
We used Gospel Light’s Sonworld VBS kit; they put out great Vacation Bible School programs and the kids had a blast. I took care of the skits and the game time, which was a lot of fun. But man, I’m tired! Between VBS during the day, and kids awake all night … I’ve been cruising on fumes! Anyway, the above is a video I threw together Friday afternoon before the closing ceremony. Enjoy!
GROWING SOULS: EXPERIMENTS IN CONTEMPLATIVE YOUTH MINISTRY
By Mark Yaconelli; Youth Specialties, 2007, 224 pp., $21.99
In a culture where busyness and frantic, consumerist centered programming is often times celebrated and demanded, Yaconelli urges the reader to rethink this methodology. He first lays out the groundwork for what a contemplative based youth ministry looks like, and then chronicles the experiences of several churches who participated in this project with different levels of success. He is thorough in his exploration of the subject, and I appreciated his honesty in not only describing the successes, but also the failures in these experiments. Yaconelli is a breath of fresh air, describing a type of ministry that my spirit longs for. Over and over I found myself stopping to reflect on the thought provoking material. His writing is deep, the message desperately needed. This book certainly has my recommendation!
This review, by me, originally appeared in The Journal of Student Ministries.
Check out this new promo video for the 2009 National Youth Ministry Conference! Group Publishing and Simply Youth Ministry have been teaming up to produce one of the big youth ministry conferences of the year (Youth Specialties is the other big dog in the YM convention world). This upcoming event will mark their third year and I’m starting to think I need to check it out! : ) Youth ministry conferences have been the highlight of my year the last five years (I’ve become a regular at Youth Specialties’ events), and for good reason. There’s just something incredibly refreshing and energizing about getting together with a couple thousand other youth workers, learning together, interacting with each other, and celebrating and worshipping together that is absolutely indescribable. My philosophy of ministry has been heavily influenced and shaped through the teachings of the guys in the Simply crew (from way back in college before I ever even met any of them and was just being assigned their books!), so I’m finding myself very interested in a conference that features so many of my favorite and most trusted voices in youth ministry. To find out more about the conference, click here.