Teen girls made pact to get pregnant.

June 20, 2008

As many as 17 girls made a pact at Gloucester High School in Massachusetts to become pregnant.  Most of the girls, all under 16 years old, did so with men in their 20s.  Superintendent Christopher Farmer said the girls are generally “girls who lack self-esteem and have a lack of love in their life.”

We currently distribute a video by The Institute of American Values entitled, Hardwired to Connect.  This video talks about the general sense of disconnectedness among young people today.  This story of these girls is one more example of that disconnectedness and a desire to be connected.  The video sets a premise that we are, at least partially, to blame for this.  We are not providing enough opportunities for connectedness. In addition, we adults are not intentionally building relationships with enough young people which leaves them wanting emotional connection one way or another.  In other words, they are looking for love and often times in all the wrong places.

We encourage you to look for ways to reach out and connect with young people in your community.  What can your church do to provide for connectedness?  How can your church build healthy relationships with young people beyond its walls ?  What is your church doing to provide young people with a safe place that incorporates healthy Christian relationships where they know they belong?

Take steps today to connect young people to each other, to caring adults who act as role models, and to Jesus Christ.

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Faith and Fatherhood- The importance of men in children’s ministry.

June 18, 2008

We have just celebrated Father’s day and articles abound on fatherhood today.  Many of these articles are negative but one that caught my attention talked about the positive influence of faith on fatherhood and the importance that it plays in the church and home environment.  The article appeared in the Wall Street Journal on Friday, June 13, 2008.  It was written by a professor from the University of Virginia.  One part of the article points to the overall benefits to the home, children and church of father’s who are deeply involved in their faith.

It says, “that religious fathers are more likely to devote time, attention and affection to their children than their secular peers. For example, compared with dads who indicate no religious affiliation, fathers who attend religious services regularly devote at least two more hours per week to youth-related activities, such as coaching soccer or leading a Boy Scout troop. Churchgoing fathers are also significantly more likely to keep tabs on their children, monitoring their activities and friends. Finally, religious fathers are about 65% more likely than unaffiliated fathers to report praising and hugging their school-age children ‘very often.'”

For all of you involved in ministry to young people, we know it can be hard to get men involved because of their schedules, routines, and activities.  However, this article is a great way to help them understand how valuable their participation is to the children in their lives and at church.  Not only does their involvement help kids but the article goes on to demonstrate the tremendous wholeness it brings to the lives of the men as well. In summary, when men are involved in ministry everyone benefits. That is a win, win, win scenario.

You can read the whole article here, http://online.wsj.com/article/SB121331741679270239.html?mod=taste_primary_hs , which is based on a report from one of our partners, The Institute for American Values.


Getting involved with the kids in my church … our future.

June 4, 2008

We received this letter from a LOGOS volunteer who works with middle schoolers and it says all there is to say about working with kids. She works full-time, but makes room for working with young people. Thanks Leslie.

I have a list of 15 fairly major projects I’ve worked on at my church this year, including stuff like chairing the fall Every Member Commitment (EMC) Campaign to help raise our $1.3 million budget, singing in a choir and being an active part of United Methodist Women.

So why did I choose to teach 6th grade Bible study this year at LOGOS?

Simple. The Return On Investment (or ROI) is HUGE.

1. Since LOGOS is well-organized and well-run, my entire involvement takes only a couple of hours each week during the school year. I plan the lesson in 30 minutes or so each week, then show up for a dinner someone else has slaved over, sit with “my” 6th graders, and then head downstairs for our 45-minute Bible discussion.

2. While kids these days are probably a lot like kids were 20 years ago, I’ve noticed something that seems to be on the rise since I first began working with Middle Schoolers in 1990. Now, more than ever, kids are desperately seeking adults (other than parents and teachers) who:

· Know who they are

· Call them by name

· Can talk with them one-on-one

· Will set boundaries and hold them accountable

· And are available to teach them, learn from them and be together in a safe, Christian relationship

· Simply put, kids are hungering and thirsting for mentors! And they simply do not have enough. I saw that in the eyes of my 6th graders this year.

Kids today need Christian role models. They need me, and they need you. In return, they are willing to provide all the love your heart can possibly hold.

To get hand-made necklaces, prayer jars, goodies and Christmas cards, to have kids run up to me on Sunday morning to share a personal story, E-mail me for advice, to have a problem child tell me they love me, is a huge payback, a great blessing. And it is a prime opportunity where you get the reward right here and now –for making a difference in a child’s life. Small investment. HUGE payoff. Quickly.

My only question is, why WOULDN’T you choose to help at LOGOS?

~Leslie 5.2.08