the teen moment
By Diogenes (articles ) | Oct 31, 2005
Amy Welborn has some pointed commentary on Catholic youth ministry.
I am not convinced that most current (read, for the past two decades) trends in Catholic youth ministry have the net effect of rooting young people in a faith that will take them through to mature Catholic faith. It is all very much about pandering to the Teen Moment, and frankly, the Teen Moment passes pretty quickly -- usually by the end of the first semester of college. And, ironically, some of the most solid teens, faith-wise, are extremely skeptical of the Teen Moment from the get-go, and are turned off by it. This is not about music, activities, etc...it's about something deeper. In fact, it's not about what's there, but about what's missing. Which is, in short, an explicit connection to the bigger, wider deeper Church that is 2000 years old, wise, rich and is the Body of Christ, for them, right now.
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Posted by: -
Nov. 03, 2005 3:08 PM ET USA
I think part of the problem is that everyone seems to think of teenagers as Peter Pans. They don't wanna grow up. If you talk to a teen, he will undoubtedly tell you that he does want to grow up, and be the best man or woman that he can be. Let's change Catholic Youth Ministry.
Posted by: -
Oct. 31, 2005 5:27 PM ET USA
As I'm just out of my teens, I can say that that's absolutely spot-on. Most youth ministers (who, ironically, haven't been youth for decades) think that emotions and music are the only way to reach the youth. They avoid teaching anything of stubstance either for fear of offending someone, or because they themselves dissent from it.
Posted by: Sir William -
Oct. 31, 2005 3:59 PM ET USA
I teach CCD to 14 yr olds. I use a Bible, the CCC & bios of early Saints, Martyrs & Church Fathers. We explore prayer, the Sacraments & Church Teachings and Traditions with no rapping, no silly games, no crafts. I don't entertain, I teach. And they learn eagerly. Parents tell me its the first time their child has taken any interest in the Faith, and they are willing to share what they learn. My kids often say its the first time they feel they've learned something. It can be done well.