“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart & with all your soul & with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home & when you walk along the road, when you lie down & when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands & bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses & on your gates.” – Deuteronomy 6:4-9
“Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.” Proverbs 22:6
The COG Vision for Youth & Parent Ministry
- We at Covenant of Grace are seeking to become more effective in partnering with parents & family.
- We understand that the number one influence in a child’s life are his or her parents.
- According to Barna Research group: Teenagers list parents as their top spiritual-growth influencers at 38% . Coming in a distant 2nd at 7% was youth leaders & pastors & church.
- Parents play the central role in developing their children’s faith growth. The church is here to help both parents and youth.
- These two combined influences, church and family, create synergy & build everyday faith.
The COG Youth & Parent Ministry Commitment
When doing youth ministry we will be committed to do the following:
1. Get away from doing youth ministry in a bubble and as a separate ministry but rather connect the youth with parents and families and with other church ministries. (Examples- Serve the City with Men’s/Women’s ministries, & 61:4, a weekly summer service outing to those in our church body)
2. Partner the youth ministry with families & parents. (Examples, having parents & other adults more involved in events like Festivus, Chili Bowl, Small Groups)
3. Mobilize every generation to be the church. Every age should be serving in some capacity within the church, from children to adults.
4. Communicate the truth of the Gospel in all we do.
5. We also provide an opportunity for parents to learn and grow together in what we call Parent Youth Group.
Parent Youth Group
- For Parents by Parents.
- Be Equipped.
- Be Encouraged.
- Gospel Powered Parenting.
What is Parent Youth Group?
- A small group for parents by parents.
- A parent small group that meets during the Sunday School hour one quarter a year.
- A place to be equipped & encouraged.
- Help families participate with the church.
- Fellowship, eat, pray, laugh, be encouraged being around like minded peers.
- Study a particular book or topic.
- We hope to provide parental topics appropriate for parents with kids of all ages.
Why is PYG needed?
- Parents matter most when it comes to the religious formation of their children.
- It is no surprise that all studies find that children tend to mirror the religious lives of their parents, so nurturing faith in young people means investing in the faith of their parents & congregations.
- The Fuller Youth Institute has confirmed that 70% of youth leave the church after leaving the home. How can we, as parents & the church correct this?
- “Who people become as adults – their thinking & behavior – is largely determined by what happens in their minds and hearts by age thirteen.”– Youth & Religion National Survey
- But more important than statistics is the biblical evidence for a family focused ministry:
- “There is only one reason for the church of Jesus Christ to commit itself to family ministry. In the Bible, God tells us He created the institution of family to advance the gospel and build His kingdom. The family is a Great Commission institution. He calls parents to be the primary spiritual trainers of their children at home (see Gen. 1:28; 18:18-19; Deut. 6:5-7; Psalm 78; Acts 2:38-39). God created marriage for the purpose of spiritual discipleship (Eph. 5) and the raising of the next generation for the glory of God (Mal. 2:13-16).
- God then called the early church to equip the family for spiritual success. The church brought families together for worship. The church trained parents, particularly fathers, to disciple their children at home (Eph. 6:4). The church called married men and women to prioritize their ministry and commitment to their spouse above all others (Eph. 5). Men were not qualified to serve as pastors/elders if they were not already serving as the loving spiritual leader of their homes (Titus 1:5). The early church advanced the gospel in and through families, and we must do the same. ” – (Excerpt from an article by Dr. Rob Rienow. A pastor, author and founder of Visionary Family Ministries – VisionaryFam.com.)
Other Youth & Parent Ministries Activities:
- Monthly informative ParentLink newsletter.
- Biannual Serve the City event where the church & parents are invited to serve side by side with youth.
- Check out the Children’s Ministry page for all the many ways they too partner with parents. Click HERE.
- Plus several other youth events throughout the year where parents are encouraged to participate or help facilitate.